Published: 23rd June 2020
Delhi High Court grants bail to pregnant Jamia student leader Safoora Zargar
A single judge bench of Justice Rajiv Shakdhar granted bail to Zargar, who is four months pregnant, after the Solicitor General expressed no objection in her release on humanitarian grounds
The Delhi High Court on Tuesday granted bail to Jamia Coordination Committee member Safoora Zargar in a case relating to the riots that broke out in the national capital's north east district in February this year.
A single judge bench of Justice Rajiv Shakdhar granted bail to Zargar, who is four months pregnant, after the Solicitor General expressed no objection in her release on humanitarian grounds.
"Neither going into the merits, nor considering this as a precedent, we have no problem with the petitioner being released on bail," the Solicitor General (SG) told the court on behalf of the State adding that Safoora shall not misuse the said relief for indulging in similar activities for which she is being probed.
Following SG's submissions, the high court granted bail to Safoora and directed her to furnish a bail bond of Rs 10,000 and one surety of like amount. "The accused shall not indulge in acts of tampering with evidence or influencing the witness," the court added.
The court also asked Safoora to be in touch with the investigating officer and shall call the officer every 15 days. "The petitioner shall not leave the territory of Delhi and if doing so prior permission of the concerned court shall be sought," the bench ruled.
Earlier on Monday, the Delhi Police in its response to the regular bail plea moved by the JMI scholar had stated that "there is no exception carved out for pregnant inmate, who is accused of such heinous crime."
"There is no exception carved out for pregnant inmate, who is accused of such heinous crime, to be released on bail merely because of pregnancy. To the contrary the law provides for adequate safeguards and medical attention during their custody in jail," a status report filed by the Delhi Police before Justice Shakdher read.
"It is extremely crucial to note here that accused (Safoora) has been lodged in a separate cell, all alone, and therefore, the chance of her contacting Covid from any other person does not arise. In fact, more care and caution are being practiced in jail so far as social distancing norms are concerned than would be available to her outside the jail premises," the police had said, adding that till date 39 deliveries have taken place in Delhi prison in last 10 years.
Safoora was arrested by the Delhi Police's Special Cell and is accused of hatching a conspiracy to incite communal riots in the national capital's north east area. The trial court had dismissed the bail plea filed by her saying that it found "no merit" in her petition.
"When you choose to play with embers, you cannot blame the wind to have carried the spark a bit too far and spread the fire," Additional Sessions Judge Dharmendra Rana had said while dismissing her bail.
The court had also stated, "If there is a prima facie evidence of conspiracy, the evidence of acts and statements made by one of the conspirators in furtherance of the common object is admissible against all..even if no direct evidence of violence is attributable to the applicant/accused, she cannot shy away from her liability under the provisions of the UAPA."
The case relates to the organising of the anti-CAA protests in the Jaffrabad area where the agitators, the majority of whom were women, had started the protests against the amended Act last year.
Violence had later broken out between the protesters and the CAA supporters this year in which at least 53 people, including IB official Ankit Sharma and Head Constable Rattan Lal were killed