Delhi Riots: No Recorded Confession by Tahir Hussain, Say Police
Delhi Police’s response contradicts several reports claiming that Tahir Hussain had confessed his role in the riots
Delhi Police’s Crime Branch has said that no confession of suspended Aam Aadmi Party councillor Tahir Hussain has been recorded in connection with his alleged involvement in Delhi Riots.
The police has made this disclosure in response to a Right to Information query filed by Nilim Dutta, chairman of the Unified People’s Movement.
"Statement under Section 164 of CrPC was not recorded,” said the response submitted by Joy Tirkey, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Crime) cum Public Information Officer.
Section 164 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) deals with the recording of statements and confessions at any stage before the commencement of an inquiry or trial. Only statements recorded under it before a judicial magistrate with appropriate jurisdiction, is admissible as evidence in court. Any other statement given to the police is not admissible.
In his RTI query, Dutta had clearly asked whether Hussain had recorded any confession saying that he had planned and executed the Delhi riots and if he had, then when and before which magistrate.
Though the RTI query was for all riot cases, the police in its response has mentioned only FIR 65, which deals with the murder of IB staffer Ankit Sharma.
The police’s response to the RTI query goes against stories that had appeared in news outlets like Zee News, The Print and Asian News International (ANI), claiming that Tahir Hussain had confessed to his involvement in the Delhi riots. One story even claimed that Hussain had confessed he “wanted to teach Hindus a lesson”.
The ANI story was subsequently carried in other publications like Times of India.
Times Now also reported that Hussain had confessed but had specified that this wasn’t a signed confession.
Given that the police has now admitted that no such confession by Tahir Hussain has been recorded or submitted before a magistrate, these stories may not hold true.
Tahir Hussain’s lawyer Javed Ali had earlier spoken to The Quint and given a detailed response to these stories. He said:
- “Only confession before the magistrate under Section 164 of CrPC is only admissible in the eyes of law which has never been given by Tahir Hussain”.
- “Police is manipulating facts as their wish and desire. Tahir Hussain has not admitted anything with regard to Delhi Riots cases, the reality is he himself is a victim and has been falsely implicated. Moreover, a confessional statement made by a person to the police even before he is accused of any offence is equally irrelevant. The section of (India Evidence Act) clearly says that such a statement cannot be proved against any person accused of any offence”.
- “It does not indeed come within the definition of ‘evidence' contained in section 3 of the Evidence Act. It is not required to be given on oath, nor in the presence of the accused, and it cannot be tested by cross examination and It is a much weaker type of evidence than the evidence of an approver, which is not subject to any of those infirmities.”
Tahir Hussain has been accused of conspiring to carry out the Delhi riots, he is also an accused in the murder of Intelligence Bureau staffer Ankit Sharma as well the violence that took place in the Chandbagh area.
(With inputs by Aishwarya S Iyer)
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