CAA protest: Police ‘parroting’ govt.’s political position in chargesheet, says DU professor

In an FIR registered in connection with the death of 17-year-old Amaan, Apoorvanand’s name has been mentioned in a supplementary chargesheet

Delhi University professor Apoorvanand on Sunday said that the government’s “political position” against those protesting against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA) or National Register of Citizens (NRC) are being parroted as a legal offence in Delhi police’s chargesheet in northeast Delhi riots cases.

He cited an FIR registered in connection with the death of one Amaan due to gunshot injury in which his name had been mentioned in the supplementary chargesheet together with that of documentary filmmaker Rahul Roy, Umar Khalid, economist Jayati Ghosh, CPI (M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury and Swaraj Abhiyan leader Yogendra Yadav.

“These names are mentioned in uncorroborated statements attributed to accused who are in custody, where it is claimed that they provided support in organising the anti-CAA protests,” Mr. Apoorvanand said in a statement.

“The supplementary CS (chargesheet) proclaims that the accused persons were ‘continuously poisoning the minds of common people against the CAA/ NRC.’ This is the government’s political position; surprisingly being parroted in the supplementary CS as a legal offence,” the statement read.

He said the investigation in the FIR seemed to have focused on “delegitimising the protests and in trying to make the protesters indirectly responsible for Amaan’s death”. The investigation had not revealed who shot at Amaan, but it insisted that whoever it was, was instigated by the anti-CAA stance of the accused individuals.

“While I am not made accused, it is very surprising that the police should even accuse three young women, without any basis, of having murdered a 17-year-old boy, Amaan,” Mr. Apoorvanand said.

Following a controversy which erupted over the news of inclusion of the prominent personalities in the supplementary chargesheet, Delhi police on Sunday took to micro-blogging site Twitter saying, “it is clarified that Shri Sitaram Yechury, Shri Yogendra Yadav and Smt. Jayati Ghosh have not been arraigned as accused in the supplementary chargesheet filed by Delhi Police”.

“The supplementary CS does not improve upon the legal case, but only seems to be furthering the political agenda of discrediting the protesters, and uses all our names as part of the discrediting exercise,” Mr. Apoorvanand said in his statement released from his Twitter account.

He added, “Their act of having planned a protest is being treated as a conspiracy to violence, in which me, along with others, are projected as having abetted that cause, without any basis in law or facts”.

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