By Sushil Batra
New Delhi [India], April 8 (ANI): Actor-turned-activist Deep Sidhu, accused in the case of Republic day violence in Delhi, did not call for the protest, and there is no evidence that he mobilised the crowd to Red Fort, said Sidhu's layer during his bail plea hearing in Delhi court on Thursday.
During the bail hearing, Advocate Abhishek Gupta, appearing on behalf of Sidhu, said the call for protest was by farmer leaders, and his client is not a member of any farmers' union.
"The call for protest was by farmer leaders, I'm not a member of farmer union, no call was given by me to go to Red Fort. There is no evidence that I have mobilised the crowd," Sidhu's lawyer told the court on his behalf.
"He has not indulged in a single act of violence. He left even before violence erupted. He was even helping the police, he hasn't been a part of violence. Only people who have indulged in violence can be prosecuted. Mere presence does not make him a part of unlawful assembly," argued Sidhu's lawyer.
Advocate Gupta submitted that Delhi Police has two videos showing Sidhu was actually helping to pacify the crowd.
"We are carrying that video if my Lords wanted to see. He was a practicing lawyer and is also a Punjabi actor. He is being made a scapegoat as he is a known face," Gupta told the court.
"This is a media trial going on. Deep Sandhu was at the wrong place at the wrong time. FIR says that people broke the gates and climbed the rampart at 12.30 pm. He reached there after 2 pm," the lawyer submitted.
The Public Prosecutor appearing for Delhi Police argued that fundamental rights don't mean that one can harm the police officials. "Do the policemen don't have any fundamental rights?" asked the Public Prosecutor.
Later, the court adjourned the matter for Monday and asked for transcripts of Sidhu's speeches.
Delhi Police had arrested actor-turned-activist Deep Sidhu on February 9 for his alleged involvement in January 26 violence in the national capital.
"The names of Punjabi actor Deep Sidhu and others were included in the FIR registered in connection with the violence at Red Fort in Delhi on Republic Day," Delhi Police said earlier while adding that Sidhu was involved in the incident.
"On January 26 some people hoisted the flag at Red Fort. Some of them have been identified out of which Deep Sidhu is the prime accused," Delhi Police had said.
On Republic Day, protestors allegedly did not follow the pre-arranged route and broke barricades to enter Delhi, clashed with police and vandalised property in several parts of the national capital during the farmers' tractor rally. They also entered the Red Fort and unfurled their flags from its ramparts.
Farmers have been protesting at the different borders of the national capital since November 26 against the three newly enacted farm laws: Farmers' Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020; the Farmers Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act 2020 and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020. (ANI)