The Supreme Court on Wednesday dismissed a plea by Delhi Police to challenge a Delhi High Court order to grant bail to activist Devangana Kalita in a Delhi riots case, saying it was not inclined to interfere with the High Court order.
A bench comprising Justices Ashok Bhushan, R Subhash Reddy and MR Shah shot down Delhi Police arguments that Kalita should not be out on bail as she is an influential person and can influence witnesses.
Additional Solicitor General SV Raju, representing Delhi Police, vehemently argued that the High Court did not consider relevant aspects and placed reliance on irrelevant factors to grant bail. Raju contended that she could influence witnesses and tamper with evidence.
The bench asked: "Can this be a reason to deny bail? How will she tamper with evidence? Is she such an influential person?"
The bench said that only bail had been granted and she was not going to run away.
Justice Bhushan told Raju that if Kalita were to indulge in any activity to tamper with evidence, police could seek cancellation of her bail.
After a brief hearing, the top court dismissed the police plea.
On September 1, the Delhi High Court had granted bail to Pinjra Tod activist Devangana Kalita in a case related to riots and violence in northeast Delhi in February.
"She did not try to evade arrest or even file for anticipatory bail because she had no reason to believe that she ought to be in custody. The petitioner is a student pursuing higher education and has sufficient standing in society without any possibility of fleeing from justice," Justice Suresh Kumar Kait had said.
The order came on a petition filed by Kalita challenging a trial court's order which had dismissed her bail application.
The court also noted that the evidence in relation to the participation of the petitioner in the protests in question are available with the investigating agency, and there ws no documentation/evidence of any other nature in her possession.
"Regarding third test, i.e., influencing witnesses are concerned, the petitioner is not in position to influence witnesses in the FIR, which in any event appears to relate to public servants/police officials, and in any case, she came to be arrested almost three months after the registration of the FIR," the court said.
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