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Aligarh Muslim University Violence Case - Allahabad High Court Order

Date : 20/12/2019

After nationwide protests erupted against Citizenship Amendment Act, 2019 which is ultra vires the Constitution of India in violation of the secular fabric of India, several cases of police brutality surfaced as students across the country have been arbitrarily arrested and injured from the firing of rubber bullets, pellets, flash bombs and tear gas. The armed forces barged into the university campus of Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi and Aligarh Muslim University, Aligarh without any provocation or reasonable justification and marched into university committing all sorts of police brutality leaving more than 60 students injured with 3 students in critical medical emergency in Aligarh.

The Supreme Court was approached soon after which directed the petitioners to approach their respective High Courts.

HRLN filed a petition immediately on the next day and mentioned the same on 19th December, 2019 before the Allahabad High Court on which Divison Bench comprising of Chief Justice took cognizance of the case filed against police brutality in Aligarh Muslim University on 15th December, 2019. After looking into the photographs annexed in the petition, Chief Justice expressed his concern and said, “You (state) have made it a war-like situation.” The petition sought for a ‘Court Monitored Committee’ to be formed to set up a judicial inquiry into the acts of violence and arbitrary detention. He listed the case to be heard on 2nd January, 2020 calling counters from IG, SSP Aligarh and AMU. The Bench further declined request of State counsel for keeping the matter on 6th January, 2020. “It is a matter requiring urgent attention”, remarked the Chief Justice.

With regards to detention, the Chief Justice of the Allahabad High Court has asked to file Habeas Corpus immediately, which can be filed by the family members if the students are unable to approach the court. The order also records the concerns raised in petition regarding destroying of CCTV footage and crucial evidence, with observation by High Court against the tampering of evidence.

The High Court has further given directions for the District Magistrate to ensure all necessary medical aid and assistance. The effect of the High Court order can be seen from the swift action from district administration wherein a magisterial inquiry would be conducted by Additional District Magistrate in Aligarh and the report is to be filed within a month. The DM has
specifically said that assessment would be made under the conditions with which the police had to resort to violence.

In stark contrast, with regards to the case of police brutality in Jamia Millia Islamia, the Chief Justice of the Delhi High Court refused to interfere and posted the matter for February amidst loud chants of “Shame! Shame!” without passing any speaking order. In a shocking development, Chief Justice has ordered for a committee to be formed to look into the incident of
shouting ‘shame’ in court after the hearing in Jamia Violence Case. Furthermore, the order from Delhi High Court has not been uploaded yet and even though it was mentioned today for dasti order, the request was declined without assigning any reason. “As the peaceful protesters continue to raise their concerns against CAA, the manner in which Delhi High Court has proceeded ahead with the case will only accomplice the armed forces in committing more barbaric brutalities with aggravated violence accompanied with tear gas, unidentified explosives, stun grenades, rubber bullets and lathi charges”, one victim of armed forces violence commented on grounds of anonymity.

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