The Jantar Mantar inflammatory speech accused former Bharatiya Janata Party spokesperson Ashwini Upadhyay has been granted bail by a Delhi Court.
He was granted bail by the Magistrate, Udbhav Kumar Jain, with a bond of fifty thousand rupees.
Ashwini Upadhyay was detained by the police on August 10 and was awaiting a pending bail application. While hearing the bail plea of Ashwini Upadhyay, the Court said that except for assertion, the record doesn’t show that hate speech, promoting enmity between groups, was performed at the behest of the accused. Vikas Singh, Senior Advocate, appearing for Ashwini Upadhyay, called the arrest a blatant abuse.
He stated that the police powered the discrimination. Sidharth Luthra and Gopal Shankarnarayan also appeared for the accused and said that the Bharatiya Janata Party member was detained illegally and thus should be released on bail.
The public prosecutor opposed the application with the reasoning that the rally was violating the protocols to be followed in the Covid-19 pandemic and didn’t contain a permit by the police official.
The court rejected the point raised by the prosecutor, stating that the offenses for the breach are bailable. The court has granted bail and asked Upadhyay to cooperate during the investigation and asked him not to leave the country.
The Delhi Police have stated that raids are being conducted to arrest Pinki Chaudhary and Uttam Malik from Hindu Raksha Dal.
The two are also accused in the case, and according to the police officials, they both have switched off their phones and haven’t returned home since the seventh of August.
Hundreds of student activists and civil society individuals joined near Jantar Mantar to protest against the alleged case of inflammatory speech.
The students were stopped by the police, and some were detained as well. N Sai Balaji, the national president of the All India Students Association (AISA), accused the police of detaining the people protesting peacefully.
The protesters also held a protest march towards the Parliament. A senior police officer informed that the protestors didn’t have permission to conduct a large gathering, and hence they were asked to disperse.
The protesters started running, which led to chaos. As a result, the protesters were detained at the Mandir Marg police station.
A rally was organized in the early weeks of August at Mantar to agitate against the colonial-era laws in India. A video from the rally went viral on social media, showcasing inflammatory speeches being raised by people in the crowd.
Shipra Srivastava, the media-in-charge of the Bharat Jodo Andolan, had stated that Ashwini Upadhyay organized the rally.
Both Ashwini Upadhyay and Shipra Srivastava have denied involvement in the inflammatory speech being raised in the rally.
Following this, Ashwini Upadhyay and five others were arrested by the Delhi Police. Vinod Sharma, Vinit Kranti, Preet Singh, Deepak, and Deepak Singh were arrested for involvement in the case.
Upon investigations, it was found that the rally was held without the permission of the police. The accused were charged with sections 153A for promoting enmity between different groups and 188 for disobedience to order duty promulgated by the public servant of the Indian Penal Code.
They’re also charged under the Disaster Management Act (DDMA) section 51 for violating the Covid-19 protocols.
On August 10, Delhi Patiala House had sent the Bharatiya Janata Party leader and another accused to two days in custody, while Deepak and Vineet – the other accused, were remanded.
The court asked for a response by the police officials of Delhi on the bail plea of Ashwini Upadhyay.