Bhim Army chief Chandrashekhar Azad, who was released from Tihar Jail on Thursday after a Delhi court granted him bail ordering him not to hold any protest in Delhi till February 16, was once again spotted at the iconic Jama Masjid, where it all started.
Azad on Friday was seen at the Jama Masjid where people were staging a protest against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and National Register of Citizens (NRC).
The Bhim Army chief read out the Preamble of the Constitution at Delhi’s iconic monument.
Addressing the media and the protesters, Chandrashekhar Azad said: “Peaceful protest is our strength. People from all religions who support us should join us in great number to prove it to the government that these protests are not led by Muslims alone.”
On Azad’s visit to Jama Masjid, the Delhi Police said that the Bhim Army chief has 24 hours after his release from Tihar to leave Delhi, adding that he is not holding any protest.
Earlier in the day, speaking to news agency ANI, Chandrashekhar Azad had said that he is in the national capital to visit the Ravidas temple, a gurdwara, followed by a church and later the Jama Masjid. He further stated that the purpose behind the scheduled visits is to mark his protest against CAA and NRC and also to tell the people that such “black laws” cannot be imposed on the public.
Delhi’s Tis Hazari Court on Wednesday granted bail to Bhim Army Chief Chandrashekhar Azad who was arrested in connection with the violence that erupted in the Daryaganj area of the national capital amid protests against CAA.
Additional Sessions Judge Kamini Lau while granting bail to Azad ruled that Azad cannot stay in Delhi or hold any dharna till Delhi elections are over.
The court also asked the Delhi Police to escort Azad to his residence in Saharanpur within 24 hours of his release.
Lau also clarified that before leaving for Saharanpur, if Azad wishes to visit any place in Delhi including Jama Masjid or Ravidas Temple, the Delhi Police will not stop him.
The court said the conditions were for a period of one month in view of the upcoming assembly elections in Delhi and Azad might seek modification of the order in pursuance to the legal rights available to him.
Earlier on Tuesday, the Tis Hazari Court slammed the city police saying people can carry out peaceful protests anywhere and that it is one’s “constitutional right”.
“Jama Masjid is not Pakistan where we are not allowed to protest. Peaceful protests take place in Pakistan as well,” the court said.
“Which law mentions that there is a prohibition on protest in front of any religious place?” the court questioned.
Bhim Army chief Chandrashekhar Azad on Monday filed a bail plea before a Delhi court in connection with a case relating to the violence that broke in the Daryaganj area of the national capital.
Azad had claimed that there was no evidence against him in the FIR which states that he had instigated the crowd to march to Delhi Gate from Jama Masjid and indulge in violence.
The Bhim Army chief was sent to judicial custody on December 21. Azad’s outfit had organised a march from Jama Masjid to Jantar Mantar against the amended Citizenship Act and National Register of Citizens on December 20, without police permission.
The Jama Masjid in Old Delhi became the site for a massive protest against CAA as Bhim Army chief Chandrashekhar Azad surfaced at the iconic monument holding a copy of the Preamble of the Constitution along with posters of BR Ambedkar as he led thousands of protesters.
Tens of hundreds of people had turned up in the Jama Masjid area and raised slogans denouncing the newly-enacted law. Protestors carried posters of Mahatma Gandhi and BR Ambedkar at the rally and demanded that the new law be withdrawn.
As protests turned violent in Daryaganj, the police resorted to lathi-charge and used water cannons to disperse the mob.
This followed as protesters resorted to stone-pelting at the security forces.
At least 46 people were injured in the stone-pelting and police action. A vehicle was torched outside Daryaganj police station.