SC adjourns bail hearing of Delhi riots accused Umar Khalid


The Supreme Court on Monday postponed the bail hearing of Umar Khalid, an accused in the Delhi riots case, under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act. Umar Khalid has been in custody since September 2020 for his involvement in the larger conspiracy behind the communal violence that occurred in February 2020 in the Indian capital. The hearing was adjourned after an adjournment letter was given in court by Umar Khalid’s counsel.
A bench comprising Justices AS Bopanna and Bela M Trivedi was examining Khalid’s plea, which challenged the Delhi High Court’s decision to deny him bail last year.
Umar Khalid is one of the accused involved in the broader conspiracy related to the 2020 North-East Delhi communal riots case. He, along with 59 others, including Devangana Kalita, Natasha Narwal, Asif Iqbal Tanha, and Gulfisha Fatima, have been charged in the case.
Several others have also been charge-sheeted in the case, such as former Congress councillor Ishrat Jahan, Jamia Coordination Committee members Safoora Zargar, Meeran Haider, and Shifa-Ur-Rehman, former Aam Aadmi Party councillor Tahir Hussain, activist Khalid Saifi, Shadab Ahmed, Tasleem Ahmed, Mohd Salim Khan, and Athar Khan.
Khalid and Sharjeel Imam were the last to be charge-sheeted in the case, while Zargar, Kalita, Narwal, Tanha, and Jahan had already been granted bail. The Delhi High Court had upheld the trial court’s denial of bail to Khalid in October of the previous year. The court observed that the protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act, 2019, were linked to the 2020 North-East Delhi riots through various ‘conspiratorial meetings,’ some of which Khalid had reportedly attended.
In his plea before the Supreme Court, Khalid challenged the Delhi High Court’s verdict. The court issued a notice in response to his plea in May of this year. The hearing was adjourned during the last session at the request of the Delhi Police, who sought more time to file a counter-affidavit in response to Khalid’s petition.