Organiser, 19 others named suspects in charge sheet
Almost three months after the Azad Maidan violence, the charge sheet filed by the crime branch on Friday remained largely silent on the role of the persons who organised the protest rally. Presley Thomas reports.mumbai Updated: Nov 10, 2012 01:58 IST
Almost three months after the Azad Maidan violence, the charge sheet filed by the crime branch on Friday remained largely silent on the role of the persons who organised the protest rally.
None of the organisers have been shown as wanted in the charge sheet. Instead, 20 people, including Rizwan Khan of Madina-Tul-Ilm, former assistant commissioner of police Shamsher Khan Pathan and other religious leaders, present on the dais have been named as 'suspects'.
Legal experts, however, said that they there was no provision in law to mention anybody as a suspect in a charge sheet and it was not legally tenable.
On August 11, Madina-Tul-Ilm, a Kurla-based unregistered educational trust and Raza Academy had organised a protest against alleged atrocities on Muslims in Myanmar and Assam, which took a violent turn.
Senior counsel Amin Solkar said that filing a charge sheet was an indication that the investigation had concluded. "If the police find fresh evidence in the case, then they can seek permission from the court and conduct further investigations, and file a supplementary charge sheet," Solkar said. "How can the crime branch name people they have questioned and investigated as suspects? It is not legally permissible."
Ambadas Pote, deputy commissioner of police, crime, said, "The reason we have mentioned them as suspects is because we are still investigating if they were involved in the violence in any manner."
A crime branch source said another reason was that none of the arrested accused had said the organisers or religious leaders instigated them.
Though prima facie there is no case registered against the organisers for being part of the conspiracy or for inciting violence, the crime branch wants to recover Rs 2.74 crore of loss to public and private property from them.