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Dera violence: Another rioting case falls flat, six walk free

Their previous acquittal took place in a case registered on the complaint of a Mohali-based photo journalist, who had accused them of snatching his video camera and tripod.

punjab Updated: Jul 31, 2018 12:28 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Panchkula
Dera violence,panchkula violence,Dera Sacha Sauda
The dera chief’s conviction in the 2002 rape cases had triggered arson and violence across Haryana that claimed 36 lives and left 250 people injured.(HT File )

A local court on Mondayacquittedsix people who had been booked for rioting after Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim’s conviction in two rape cases in a Panchkula court on August 25 last year.

It is second such case (FIR 362) lodged at the Sector 5 police station, among around 200 registered in Panchkula, in which court has passed an order. A detailed order will be out on August 2.

On April 30, the same six men were acquitted in another dera violence case (FIR 415).

In the case decided upon on Monday, Hoshiyar Singh (55) of Kaithal, Ravi Kumar (21) of Mukstar Sahib, Sanga Singh (60), Gyani Ram (55) and Tarsem (40) of Sangrur, and Ram Kishan (60) of Karnal had been charged under Sections 148 (rioting, armed with deadly weapon), 149 (unlawful assembly guilty of offence), 436 (mischief by fire or explosive substance with intent to destroy house, etc) and 511 (attempting to commit offences) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and Section 3 of the Prevention of Damage to Public Property Act.

The chargesheet filed last December mentioned that they damaged and tried to set afire the building of Haryana State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission in Sector 4. It further mentioned that despite Section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) — banning unlawful assembly of five or more persons — in place in the district, they disobeyed the directions.

However, the court of district and sessions judge Ritu Tagore on Mondayacquittedthe six of all charges.

Their previous acquittal took place in a case registered on the complaint of a Mohali-based photo journalist, who had accused them of snatching his video camera and tripod at Hafed Chowk, Sector 5.

The dera chief’s conviction in the 2002 rape cases had triggered arson and violence across Haryana that claimed 36 lives and left 250 people injured. Panchkula witnessed its worst violence to date.

Around 1,100 dera followers, including core committee members of the Sirsa-based sect, are facing around 200 cases of rioting, which are at various stages at the local court here. Trial has begun in only a handful of them.

First Published: Jul 31, 2018 12:28 IST