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Record Statement of Muslim Man Beaten & Forced To Sing National Anthem: Delhi HC

The Delhi Police had reportedly beaten five men and forced them to chant ‘Vande Mataram during the 2020 Delhi riots.

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Record Statement of Muslim Man Beaten & Forced To Sing National Anthem: Delhi HC
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The Delhi High Court on Monday, 8 May, ordered that the statement of one of the five men who were thrashed, allegedly by the Delhi Police, while being forced to sing the national anthem during the 2020 Northeast Delhi riots, be recorded before a magistrate.

The order comes three years after a harrowing video of the incident went viral.

23-year-old Faizan, was one of those five men. He died after allegedly being beaten up by the police in custody, reported Livelaw.

Wasim, who is now slated to record his statement, was also part of the group that suffered the alleged thrashing while being made to sing the national song. According to his lawyer, Wasim was also an eye witness to the incident, including what transpired with the deceased at the police station.

The incident: A video of police personnel beating five injured persons (including Wasim and Faizan) who are lying on the road, forcing them to recite the national anthem went viral on social media. 

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TLDR: Following the anti-CAA & NRC protests which started in December 2019, and the opposition to the protests, communal clashes ensued in northeast Delhi in February 2020. Fifty-three people were reported dead, hundreds were injured, and property worth crores was destroyed in the violence.

Faizan's death: Faizan’s family had alleged that Delhi Police had assaulted and illegally detained him. During the detention they are also alleged to have denied him emergency healthcare as a result of which, he succumbed to his injuries later.

He was released late evening on 25 February 2020 from the police station, and died at a hospital on 26 February.

“It has been my case from the beginning that there are two sets of police teams that are responsible for the custodial death of my son," Advocate Vrinda Grover, who is representing Faizan’s mother Kismatun, told the court.

One, she said, were those who carried out the purported assault. Two, according to her were those who kept him in custody, further assaulted him and also allegedly denied him emergency medical treatment while he was there.

Previously, Kismatun had argued that her son’s death is a “hate crime and custodial murder” and that he was “targeted for his religion.”

“The incident happened in February 2020. Today we are in May 2023. The question I ask my self is: Is there a different threshold when the accused are in uniform?” Grover added, according to Bar and Bench.

The court pulls up police: The Delhi High Court, in March last year, had also pulled up the police for delaying investigation in this case.

“Whatever important person is involved, whatever VIP is involved, you have to complete the investigation without any influence. There is a purpose for keeping this writ petition in this court,” the court had said.

The police had maintained that they had “zeroed in on a head constable making the video” and that no stone was being left unturned in the probe.

Meanwhile, an array of FIRs have been lodged in connection with the Northeast Delhi riots. Many student leaders, protesters and activists continue to languish in custody, under stringent UAPA charges.

(With inputs from Livelaw, Bar and Bench)

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Topics:  Delhi Riots 2020 

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