2020 Delhi riots: Former AAP leader Tahir Hussain charged with rioting, criminal conspiracy

A Delhi court on Friday framed charges against former Aam Aadmi Party councillor Tahir Hussain and five others under several provisions of the Indian Penal Code in the 2020 North East Delhi violence case, Bar and Bench reported.

They have been charged with criminal conspiracy, rioting, mischief causing damage, mischief by fire or explosive substance with intent to destroy the property, and dacoity.

Hussain is also charged with Indian Penal code sections 149 (member of unlawful assembly guilty of offence committed in prosecution of common object) and 109 (abetment of offence).

Clashes had broken out between supporters of the Citizenship Amendment Act and those opposing it between February 23, 2020, and 26, 2020, in North East Delhi, killing at least 53 people and injuring hundreds. The police were accused of either inaction or complicity in some instances of violence, mostly in Muslim neighbourhoods.

Additional Sessions Judge Virender Bhatt on Friday said that Hussain was an active rioter during the incident.

“He was not a mute spectator but was taking an active part in the riots and instigating other members of the unlawful assembly to teach a lesson to the persons belonging to the other community,” the order read, reported Bar and Bench.

The prosecution told the court that a building owned by Hussain was used during the violence to hurl stones.

The court noted that the act was never spontaneous and instead of a well-planned one.

“The referred circumstances nowhere indicate that it was a spontaneous act but clearly reveal that there had been an agreement between the accused herein to commit vandalisation and arson in the properties belonging to Hindu community from the building E-17 belonging to accused Tahir Hussain,” the order said. “Elaborate preparations had been done to fulfil the object of the agreement or conspiracy.”

Apart from Hussain, the court framed charges against Anas, Firoz, Javed, Gulfam and Sohaib Alam.

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