Anti-CAA Protest: Activist Group Alleges Khalid Saifi Tortured in Delhi Police Custody

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India Tomorrow

NEW DELHI, FEBRUARY 28—The activist group-United Against Hate-has strongly condemned to what its calls the “illegal arrest” and “custodial beating up” of one of its founding members-Khalid Saifi, a former corporator Ishrat Jahan and several other activists of Khureji Khas-on February 26.

The group has alleged that Saifi and Ishrat Jahan were brutally beaten up in Delhi police custody in which he fractured both of his legs.

Saifi was the brain behind the anti-CAA protest that was going on in Khureji in northeast Delhi since January 13.

The protesters, who were continuing their sit-in on the land belonging to a local Muslim trust without causing inconvenience to traffic or even pedestrians had, however, blocked the road on February 25. This resulted obstruction to traffic movement.

Saifi, along with Prof. Apoorvanand of Delhi University rushed to the place and got the road-block cleared from protesters. The protesters went back to their original protest site.

But on February 26, police went to the anti-CAA protest site unannounced and began removing the protesters without any provocation.

It was then that Saifi reached the spot and tried to intervene between the protesters and the police.

Saifi was allegedly manhandled, immediately detained “without any just and fair reasons” and taken to the Jagatpuri Police Station. Along with him were also arrested former corporator Ishrat Jahan and several other activists.

“Mr Saifi at no account, misbehaved or violated any law. This act of police is against the Constitutional principles and the right to peaceful protest”, said the UAH.

The UAH alleged that when a team of advocates reached the police station to seek release of Saifi and others, they were manhandled by police. A female advocate, UAH alleged, was slapped by a male police officer.

When they were taken to the courtroom, those present there found Saifi and Ishrat Jahan had their hands and legs in casts which is done to hold and stabilise broken bones. The UAH claimed that they did not have injuries when they were taken into custody earlier in the day. The court sent them to 14 days judicial custody as the police had charged them with attempt to murder under Section 307 of IPC.

“It is pertinent to note that Section 307 IPC is a very serious charge that has been levelled upon the detainees with a clear prejudiced and pre-determined mindset, in order to falsely implicate and humiliate them. The whole series of incidents are against the principles of natural justice, and an act of blatant Islamophobia by the Delhi police administration”, the UAH statement said.
The UAH has demanded that Saifi, Ishrat Jahan and all others arrested be released immediately and action be taken against police personal who assaulted them and the lawyers.

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