Provide man accused of being Khalistan sympathiser with copy of FIR: Delhi court
A Delhi court has directed the city police to provide a man with a copy of an FIR registered against him. The man is accused of being a Khalistan sympathiser who, along with others, was planning to execute people and extort others for money in various north Indian states on the directions of Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI)-sponsored Khalistan leaders.
On July 30, additional sessions judge Dharmendra Rana said that an accused person is entitled to a copy of the FIR at an earlier stage, even before (s)he moves the court under Section 207 of the CrPC.
The court’s order came while hearing a plea moved by Rajkumar alias Lovepreet Singh, also known as Lovely, who was arrested in June for being a Khalistan sympathiser. The police had claimed that he was planning to kill one person who works for Saamna, the Shiv Sena mouthpiece, because he had allegedly disrespected the Guru Granth Sahib. The police had also said that he planned to target a Shiv Sena leader in Punjab for similar reasons as well as the Sarpanch of his village.
While directing the police to supply the soft copy of the document, the judge cited an earlier Supreme Court judgment and said that a copy of any FIR, unless of a sensitive nature (like a sexual offence), pertaining to insurgency, terrorism, etc is to be uploaded on the police website within 24 hours of registration, and within 48 hours in case of connectivity problems or any other unavoidable difficulty.
On June 27, the police’s Special Cell claimed to have busted a module of Sikh separatist group Khalistan Liberation Front (KLF) and arrested three sympathisers. According to the police, at least four persons in Punjab, including a politician, a follower of the jailed chief of a religious cult, and a person who had once slapped jailed Babbar Khalsa militant Jagtar Singh Hawara, were the prime targets of the arrested men.
The police had said that Lovely, one of the three arrested persons, worked at a computer repair shop and became inclined towards the Khalistan movement three or four years ago. It said that, in 2017, he met two persons who were part of the 21-member Hawara Committee.
“They called him to pro-Khalistan rallies where he met Gurtez Singh of Mansa, Punjab. Gurtez Singh enticed him to join the Khalistan movement under the guidance of Jagtar Singh Hawara and promised to send him to Pakistan for weapons training. Together, they added a few more men to their group,” DCP (Special Cell) Sanjeev Yadav said.
The Special Cell had also said that Lovely was very active on social media and had created a Facebook Page under the name ‘Khalsa Bhindrewalaji’. On this page, he called himself ‘Lovepreet Singh 1984’, and ‘Lovepreet Singh Khalistani’ while sharing several incriminating videos with posters/photos and songs supporting Khalistan leaders and the Khalistan movement, it added.
Appearing for the police, additional public prosecutor Irfan Ahmed opposed the application seeking a copy of the FIR, arguing that the investigation in the matter was at an initial stage and was yet to be completed. He had also contended that the matter required a high level of secrecy in investigation due to which the FIR was not shown in the public domain by the orders of DCP (Special Cell).
A senior police officer, who preferred anonymity, said that in cases like these, FIRS are not made public. “However, now that the court has ordered us to, we will give the copy,” the officer said.