Out on bail, Bhim Army Chief reaches Jama Masjid
Chandrashekhar Azad, the chief of the Bhim Army, participated in yet another protest against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) at Delhi's Jama Masjid, the spot where he appeared four weeks ago. The Dalit leader arrived at the iconic mosque hours before his deadline to leave Delhi expires. While granting him bail, a judge ordered Azad to leave national capital for four weeks.
Context: Azad escaped police custody, was arrested later
On December 20, Azad defied police orders to come to Jama Masjid and read the preamble. As soon as cops approached him, he gave them a slip and vanished into the large crowd. A day later, Azad was arrested by Delhi Police and he applied for bail, subsequently. His lawyer told Additional Sessions Judge Kamini Lau that he was picked up on flimsy grounds.
Nothing wrong in protests, judge said at bail hearing
Hearing Azad's bail plea, Judge Lau pulled up Delhi Police and wondered if the cops have read the Constitution. When counsel for Delhi Police claimed Azad's social media posts were enough to incite violence, the judge said this wasn't the case. Judge Lau also commented that Azad was free to protest at Jama Masjid, even if the mosque had been in Pakistan.
Azad was granted bail, but with conditions
On Wednesday, Azad was granted bail, but the court said he can't remain in the national capital, in view of state elections. Delhi will vote on February 8 and results will be declared three days later. Cops were ordered to escort him to his Saharanpur residence. For the next four weeks, Azad has to mark his attendance at Fatehpur Police Station every Saturday.
Judge quoted "Where The Mind Is Without Fear"
While granting bail, Judge Lau mentioned Rabindranath Tagore's "Where The Mind Is Without Fear", and said, "When the British followed the policy of divide and rule, Tagore visualized a nation where there is no fear in the minds people and education is attained by all."
Walking out of Tihar, Azad was welcomed by supporters
On Thursday evening, Azad got a hero's welcome outside Tihar jail, where he was lodged at. Hundreds of his supporters from Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, and Rajasthan, flocked the facility. Holding a copy of the Indian Constitution, he made his way to Shah-e-Mardan Dargah at Jor Bagh. He declared that the fight against CAA, whom he called a dictatorial law, will not end.
Visiting temple, mosque, gurudwara, and church on Azad's itinerary
The court has set a deadline of 9 pm for Azad to leave Delhi, and he clearly wants to make the most of the time. He started his day by visiting a temple, and then came to Jama Masjid where he read the Constitution's preamble. Azad also plans to go to Bangla Sahib Gurudwara and a church. A press conference is also on the schedule.Share this timeline