Second convict in Delhi riots case sentenced to 5-year imprisonment
A Delhi court Thursday sentenced Dinesh Yadav—the second person convicted in connection with the 2020 Delhi riots—to five years of imprisonment. He is also ordered to pay a fine of Rs. 12,000, his lawyer Shikha Garg told PTI. In December, the court had convicted Yadav of being part of a riotous mob that set a house on fire.
- The deadly riots in northeast Delhi in February 2020 had claimed 53 lives and left at least 400 people injured.
- Notably, this is the second sentencing in the cases related to the riots.
- However, this is the first conviction and sentencing after a full-fledged trial.
- In the first sentencing, there was no trial as the accused had pleaded guilty.
Yadav was convicted of offenses under Sections 143 (unlawful assembly), 147 (rioting), 148 (rioting armed with deadly weapon), 457 (house trespass), 392 (robbery), 436 (mischief by fire or explosive substance with intention to destroy house), read with Section 149 (every member of unlawful assembly guilty of offense committed in prosecution of common object) of the Indian Penal Code. He was arrested in June 2020.
"The fact that the accused also belongs to the Hindu community and was present in the mob armed with a wooden rod which mob resorted to violence against the Muslims indicates...he shared the common object of unlawful assembly," the court said. While he wasn't seen "entering complainant's house or vandalizing or looting or putting it on fire, doesn't mean he was merely a bystander."
The prosecution alleged that Yadav was an "active member of the riotous mob" and took active participation in vandalizing and setting ablaze the house of a 73-year-old woman named Manori on February 25, 2020, at Bhagirathi Vihar in Gokulpuri. The complainant also alleged that a mob of around 150-200 rioters attacked her house when her family was not present and looted all their belongings.
A total of 12 witnesses were examined during the trial. Yadav was identified by the complainant in her supplementary statement recorded in the matter. He was also identified by two witnesses, Aashik and Aarif, nephews of the complainant. His identification was also confirmed by police witnesses including a constable and head constable posted in the area at that time. Yadav had denied all charges.
In the first Delhi riots-related sentencing on December 17, 2021, the court let off convict, Kaleem Ahmed, as he had already served the period awarded to him by the court. However, a fine of Rs. 2,000 was imposed on him. Notably, the court on December 7 convicted Ahmed after he pleaded guilty to harboring Shahrukh Pathan, who was accused of rioting.