"The protest was secular, the charge sheet is communal,” Umar Khalid’s lawyer told a Delhi Court on Tuesday, 2 November, as the court continued to hear the bail plea moved by Khalid. This is in connection with the Delhi riots larger conspiracy case involving charges under the UAPA and the Indian Penal Code (IPC).
Representing Khalid, his lawyer Trideep Pais argued:
"The allegation – that on 10 December 2019, I (Umar) attended a CAB protest meeting at Jantar Mantar. What is UAPA about that allegation? It's not some story we are writing, no? They (Delhi Police) have to point out some illegality or crime"
Do Women Not Have Agency to Protest?
Further, referring to Delhi Police’s reported contention that women attended the anti-Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) protests because Khalid asked them to go sit there, Pais said:
“Have even one of these women told them this? Do the women not have agency to protest on a matter that affects them without some man coming and telling them what to do?”
'Had to Be Bond'
Pointing out that Delhi Police has a witness named Bond and alleging all the statements attributed to the witness as “completely fictitious,” Pais also joked:
“It had to be 'Bond', because how else can one person be so capable?"
As per Livelaw, in the last hearing, Senior Advocate Trideep Pais had argued that the entire charge sheet in FIR 59/2020 is Delhi police's fertile imagination, with no sense of consistency.
Charged under the draconian Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA), Khalid is currently in jail for his alleged involvement in the 2020 Delhi Riots.
The next date of hearing has been fixed for 8 November.