Jantar Mantar: Hindu org chief 'surrenders', supporters cheer and garland him on the way

Jantar Mantar: Hindu org chief surrenders, supporters cheer and  garland him on the way

New Delhi: One of the prime accused in the Jantar Mantar hate speech case, Hindu Raksha Dal chief Pinky Chaudhary on Tuesday afternoon surrendered to the Delhi Police at the Mandir Marg police station, where he was formally arrested in the case — but not before his supporters garlanded him, picked him up and carried him into the police station — violating all social distancing norms.

While Chaudhary had been absconding since the day of the event on August 7, he had been denied anticipatory bail in the case first by a local court here, following which the Delhi High Court had denied him interim protection from arrest as well.

Soon after on Sunday, the Hindu Raksha Dal chief released a video, publicly saying he would surrender even as the police continued their raids across NCR.

Several videos showed Chaudhary on Tuesday being accompanied by a crowd of supporters carrying him on their shoulders while being garlanded.

In Sunday's video, Chaudhary said that all allegations levelled against him with respect to the hate speech and Islamophobic slogans were untrue and without basis. He added that he has devoted his life to Hinduism and Hindutva and will continue to do so.

The Delhi Police have so far arrested nine persons in connection with the case, which included former BJP spokesperson and Supreme Court Advocate Ashwini Upadhyay.

Upadhyay was later granted bail after a court noted that he was not present when "anti-Muslim" statements were made and hence the same can't be attributed to him.

Police have also arrested one Uttam Malik, Preet Singh, Deepak Singh, Deepak Kumar, Vinod Sharma, Vinit Bajpai and Sushil Tiwari, in connection with the case. On August 10, at an event organised by Upadhyay demanding taking down of "colonial-era laws", "communal" and "anti-Muslim" statements were raised by several crowd members.

While denying him anticipatory bail, a local court had noted, It is evident from the video in question played before the court during the proceedings, and the transcript submitted thereto, that the said clip depicting the interview of the applicant is impregnated with high octane

communal barbs; laced with inflammatory, insulting and threatening gestures, ex-facie is indicative of the calculative design on the part of the applicant (Chaudhary) to promote hatred and ill-will amongst other sections of the community."

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