On Friday (April 9, 2021), two accused namely Pradeep Rai and Aman Kashyap were granted bail by the Delhi High Court. Charges of conspiracy and murder were pressed on them in connection to the Delhi Riots which had broken out last year in Northeast Delhi.
The court granted the said bail after doubting the testimony of an eye witness who had claimed to see the incident happening in front of his eyes at a place near his house. The matter was heard by a Single Judge Bench, Justice Suresh Kumar Kait who observed the following:
"In the prima facie opinion of this Court, it is possible that the eye witness, who in the present case is resident of Gali No.8, might have seen the incident taking place in Gali No.10, which is close to his place but how he could see the present incident, which has taken place in Gali No.3, and away from Gali No.10 and Gali No.8, is doubtful."
To be precise, Aman Kashyap was accused of the offences under Section 147
of the Indian Penal Code, 1860
. On the other hand, Pradeep Rai was accused of offences under Section 302
, 379, 427, 436, 120B
of IPC. The Petitioners submitted that Shashi Kant claimed to be the eye witness in not just one but multiple FIRs that were filed in the Dayalpur Police Station, so as to incidents that took place on February 25, 2020. FIRs were pertaining to two incidents that took place at Gali no. 10 and Gali no. 3 differently. Therefore, the Petitioners highlighted the fact that the distance between the two galis was around 500-700 metres and it was not possible for him to witness both the incidents, thereby calling him a ‘planted witness.’ Taking note of the aforesaid submissions, the Court raised questions on the credibility of the eye witness to the Special Public Prosecutor, Amit Mahajan. He was asked to ascertain the same. Following this, a supplementary status report was filed which was dated April 7, 2021. It mentioned the distance between Gali no. 3 and 10 as 350 metres. Prima Facie, the Court opined that it was impossible for the eye witness to see the present incident which took place in Gali No.3 and away from Gali No.10 and Gali No.8. Therefore, the Court remained doubtful about it.
The Court observed, "In the opinion of this Court, the veracity of the allegations alleged shall be tested at trial. However, keeping in view that petitioner is in judicial custody since 02.04.2020 and trial of the case shall take substantial time, without commenting on merit of the case, this court is of the opinion that the petitioners deserve bail."
Henceforth, the Court granted them bail on being able to furnish personal bond of Rs 20,000 each along with one surety each in the like amount.