Delhi riots: Court frames attempt to murder charges against man who waved gun at cop

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A Delhi Court has framed charges of rioting and attempt to murder against Shahrukh Pathan, who was seen in a viral video aiming a gun at a police constable during the riots in Delhi in February 2020.

His illegal firearm, a 7.65 mm pistol along with two live rounds was recovered and several shots had been fired by him, according to police.

Pathan is currently lodged in Tihar Jail after he was arrested on March 3 last year.

Additional Sessions Judge Amitabh Rawat said in Tuesday’s order that accused Shahrukh Pathan has raised his pistol–not sideways but straight–aiming at the Head Constable (HC) Deepak Dahiya who is taller than him but the direction of the pistol was aimed at the cop’s head and even the point at which the trigger is pulled, the aim is straight towards Dahiya.

“Usually after firing or pulling of the trigger, there is a jerk and the hands and the pistol is raised up because of the jerk. Thus, even the video shows firing by accused Shahrukh Pathan from the pistol in daylight with an aim to kill HC Deepak Dahiya. This is enough for framing the charge against the accused Shahrukh Pathan under Section 307 IPC,” the order read.

It further stated that though, no injury is caused in the present case to Dahiya, that does not mean that Section 307 IPC is not made out as injury on the part of the body of the victim is a relevant factor but it depends on the facts of the case and in the present case, injury is not material at all. The court held that it is quite apparent that accused Shahrukh Pathan led a group of rioters who formed an unlawful assembly at 66 Foota Road on February 24 last year at about 2.00 PM and fully armed with deadly weapons, committed rioting, attempt on the life of HC Deepak Dahiya, obstructed a public servant in discharge of his public functions and assaulted or used criminal force on a public servant to deter the public servant from discharge of his duty.

The judge charged Pathan under sections 147 (punishment for rioting), 148 (rioting armed with a deadly weapon), 186 (obstructing public servant in discharge of duty), and 188 (disobedience to order duly promulgated by public servant) of the IPC.

Charges were also framed under sections 353 (assault), 307 (attempt to murder) read with section 149 (member of unlawful assembly guilty of a common offence) of the IPC and various sections of the Arms Act, to which he pleaded not guilty and claimed trial.

Four other accused in the mob — Kaleem Ahmad, Ishtiyak Malik, Shamim, and Abdul Shehzad — were also charged by the court. The riots broke out in northeast Delhi in February 2020 after clashes between anti-CAA (Citizenship Amendment Act) and pro-CAA protesters took a violent turn. The time of the mayhem coincided with then US President Donald Trump’s maiden trip to India.

Over 50 people had died in the riots. Several posts had then gone viral on social media, mainly on Facebook, adding fuel to the fire.

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