Supplementary chargesheets pending in riot cases, NE district police seek help

Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Arun Kumar Garg had directed the Delhi Police Commissioner to take appropriate measures to expedite the investigation in these cases.

With supplementary chargesheets pending in cases related to the February 2020 riots, the Northeast district police has asked four districts — Central, North, Shahdara and East — to send two sub-inspectors each to assist with the work.

The decision was taken days after a Delhi court rapped the police. On September 6, upset over the delay in trial, the court, in two separate orders related to the riots, had pulled up the police for “lackadaisical attitude”, failure in “supervisory duties”, and trying to avoid “taking responsibility”. Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Arun Kumar Garg had directed the Delhi Police Commissioner to take appropriate measures to expedite the investigation in these cases. In both cases, the houses of two persons were destroyed by a mob.

Sources told The Indian Express that after this, a meeting was held by senior officers at the Delhi Police headquarters to discuss riots cases. “It was highlighted that of the 694 cases registered in several police stations in Northeast Delhi, 390 have been solved and charges framed in 39. The district police also said chargesheets in 311 cases have been filed,” said a source.

During the meeting, senior officers were also informed by the Northeast district police that they have filed supplementary chargesheets in over 100 cases and found some shortcomings in the main chargesheets.

“Following a discussion, the district police has been asked to read all chargesheets again and identify shortcomings with help from the public prosecutor. They have been asked to try and collect evidence again and file supplementary chargesheets,” a senior police officer said, adding that the DCP (Northeast) also requested senior officers to give him two SIs from four districts to expedite work.

An officer said investigation officers have been asked to visit all crime scenes, meet callers, look for more eyewitnesses, and check CCTV cameras.

During the annual press conference, former Delhi Police Commissioner S N Shrivastava had said technology was used extensively to investigate over 750 cases related to the riots and his force ensured a “free and fair” investigation. He had said the investigation team used video analytics and FRS to analyse CCTV footage to identify the accused, and retrieved deleted data from electronic devices.

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