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Gurgaon court denies bail to Jamia shooter, says ‘hate speech a fashion nowadays’

By Saima Siddiqui 
Updated Date
Gurgaon court denies bail to Jamia shooter, says ‘hate speech a fashion nowadays’

New Delhi: Shocked upon watching the 19-year-old Jamia shooter, who was arrested by Gurgaon Police for a provocative speech he made at a mahapanchayat in the district, a Pataudi court on Thursday rejected his bail plea said the “Conscience of the Court” is “utterly shocked” by the video that captures the incident and added that such “hate speech based on religion or caste” has become a “fashion”, with police also appearing to be “helpless” in such cases. The teen had last year opened fire at anti-CAA protesters near Jamia Millia Islamia, while instigating people to attack muslims.

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In the court order, Judicial Magistrate Mohammad Sageer said, “These kinds of incidents have become very common nowadays and the common man is under constant threat of violence in the name of religion, caste, etc. This incident cannot be seen only with respect to a young man’s religious intolerance, rather it is far more serious and has dangerous hidden consequences. If such people are allowed to move freely and to indulge in such kinds of activities, the very existence of communal harmony may be disturbed and that will give a wrong message that these types of acts are acceptable in society,” states the order.

Comparing the pandemic to the threat posed by people who “create disharmony” and impart “hatred against the common people”, the order states that the latter are more harmful to the country since, while “the pandemic will take life of any person without seeing the religion or caste” “only upon the negligence” of people, any communal violence caused by such “hate speeches” will lead to loss of “lots of innocent lives only on the basis of religion and without any negligence on the part of such innocent people”.

“It seems that now a normal parent would tell stories to their children that there used to be a time when talks of hatred or the religious intolerance in our society used to be seen as a sign of diminishing social values. The video produced by police in this case is raising a vital question: Does our society need to tackle the in-discriminative force of pandemic of Covid-19 first or these kinds of persons, who are filled with so much hatred that if given a chance, they would organise a mass murderer mob to kill innocents based on their own religious hatred,” the order further read.

Regarding the accused, the order takes note of his criminal history and states that “he is not a simple innocent young boy” and appears to be “very proud of his antecedents”. His treatment as a minor in the Jamia case, with the crime having occurred when he was 17, has been taken in a “wrong perspective” by the accused, making him think “he can do anything” and “there is no force to stop him as if he is protected by some indefeasible forces and the Rule of Law does not exist in our country”, states the order.

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It further says, “Enlarging the accused on bail despite his heinous crime which amounts to dividing the peaceful society on the basis of religion or caste would give a wrong message to the divisive forces. However, restraining the accused behind the bars will send a strong message against the divisive forces.”

Terming the offences committed by the accused “serious and severe”, the order states that the consequences of these can be “far more dangerous” and “may translate into communal violence”.

Rejecting the bail application, the Judicial Magistrate said, if the accused is released, “there is every possibility that a law and order situation may arise and that the accused person may again indulge in such unconstitutional and illegal activities and disturb the communal harmony and peace of society”. In addition, the order points out that the accused may also “affect the investigation and threaten the complainant and other witnesses”.

“At this juncture, the right of the accused of his personal liberty cannot be preferred against the right of the society in peaceful communal harmony and balance lies in favour of the latter,” the order states.

The mahapanchayat had taken place on July 4, to discuss religious conversion, ‘Love Jihad’, and the population control law.

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In a purported video of his speech at the event that began circulating on social media, the accused could be heard saying, “Pataudi se kewal itni si chetavani dena chaahta hoon, un… jihadiyon ko, aatankwadi mansikta ke logon ko, jab (main) sau kilometre door Jamia ja sakta hoon CAA ke samarthan mein, toh Pataudi zyada door nahin hai. (I want to give only this warning from Pataudi, to… Jihadis, people with a terrorist mindset, when (I) can go 100 kilometers away to Jamia in support of CAA, then Pataudi is not very far).”

In the video clip, he could also be heard saying that when they are attacked, Muslims will shout Ram Ram.

The counsels for the accused argued, during his bail hearing, that he is “innocent”, has been “falsely implicated” and “the video recording is fake and fabricated”.

The Jamia incident, meanwhile, had taken place on January 30, 2020, when the accused brandished a gun at protestors near Jamia and shouted slogans of “Yeh lo azadi (Here, take azadi)”, “Desh mein jo rehna hoga, Vande Mataram kehna hoga (If you want to stay in the country, you have to say Vande Mataram)”. One student had been injured in the incident.

Delhi Police officials said the accused was arrested and sent to a correctional home by the juvenile justice board, from where he was released after a few months.

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