Opposition wants independent probe into Delhi riots

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on September 17, 2020

Ahmed Patel, D Raja, Sitaram Yechury, and Manoj Jha coming to meet President Ram Nath Kovind at Rashtrapati Bhawan   -  -

A delegation of Opposition parties met President Ramnath Kovind to press for an independent probe into the Delhi riots.

The delegation comprising of CPI(M) General Secretary, Sitaram Yechury, Congress Treasurer and MP, Ahmed Patel CPI General Secretary, D Raja, DMK MP Kanimozhi and RJD MP, Manoj Jha which met the President on Thursday alleged that instead of an objective investigation, the Delhi Police is trying to silence senior politicians such as Yechury by trying to hook them in the riot case.

Kovind told the delegation that he will have the matter examined.

‘Manufactured conspiracy ’

Expressing deep concern, the leaders told Kovind that there are serious questions about the role played by the Delhi Police during the violence and also the manner in which the it is harassing and attempting to falsely implicate activists and youth who took part in the anti-CAA/NRC/NPR movements in the violence.

“Such a manufactured conspiracy theory has now begun to falsely implicate political leaders. The name of the General Secretary of the CPI(M), Sitaram Yechury, and also names of well known intellectuals, academicians and activists have now surfaced in material put out in the public domain. This is a disturbing trend that raises questions over the manner of such investigations,” they said.

They claimed that there are several publicly documented accounts and videos of police being complicit in the violence, directing mobs pelting stones or looking the other way when mobs were indulging in violence.

No action

“The notable silence in the chargesheets on the role of leaders associated with the BJP, who delivered inflammatory speeches, raises concern about the impartiality of the probe. Since December 2019, there are publicly documented speeches by leaders of the ruling party instigating and provoking violence against those involved in the anti-CAA protests, including that of a Minister raising slogans to ‘shoot the traitors’,” the memorandum said.

“In fact even when people have courageously filed complaints against BJP leaders — Kapil Mishra, Anurag Thakur, Parvesh Verma, Satya Pal Singh, Jagdish Pradhan, Nand Kishore Gujjar and Mohan Singh Bisht — accusing them of participating in or orchestrating the violence, there has been no action by the Delhi Police,” it added.

‘Restore public trust’

A credible and unbiased probe is crucial to restore public trust in the law and order machinery of the State, they said. “The investigation cannot be allowed to become fishing and roving expedition aimed at causing a chilling effect on dissent and protest in the country. We therefore urge you to call upon the Government of India to institute an inquiry into this investigation under the Commission of Inquiry Act, 1952, headed by sitting/retired judge(s),” it said.

Published on September 17, 2020

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