New Delhi, Jan 2 : A local court on Tuesday directed the Delhi Police to file a response to the bail application moved by Neelam Azad, one of the six accused in the December 13 Parliament security breach case.
Azad has sought immediate release from the custody of Delhi Police. Terming her arrest as 'illegal', Azad said it was in contravention of Article 22 (1) of the Constitution.
Additional Sessions Judge Hardeep Kaur of the Patiala House Courts has listed the matter for hearing on January 10 as the court-appointed legal aid counsel was not present.
All the six accused are currently in police custody till January 5.
Azad, along with three other accused persons, was arrested from the Parliament premises on December 13, and on December 21, a Delhi court extended their police custody till January 5.
Azad has challenged the legality of the remand order dated December 21 on the ground that she wasn’t allowed to consult a legal practitioner of her choice to defend herself during the proceedings of the remand application dated December 21 moved by the state.
She has further alleged that she was produced after 29 hours, which was contrary to the law.
The plea read, "The petitioner has placed reliance on the words 'choice' and 'defended' in Article 22(1) of the Constitution of India to emphasise that it is an admitted fact that the state prevented her from having legal representation of her choice, and when she was produced before the court, although an advocate was indeed appointed by the court, she wasn’t given the opportunity to choose the most suitable advocate from the DLSA."
It said the court has made a fatal error by adjudicating the remand application first and then asking the petitioner if she wanted to be defended by a legal practitioner of her choice.
"Thus, the right guaranteed under Article 22(1) of the Constitution was grossly violated, making the remand order dated December 21 unlawful," the plea read.
Delhi Police have told a court that the accused in the case were "hardened criminals", consistently altering their statements.
The police have registered an FIR under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act against the accused and are investigating the security lapse issue too.
The police had informed the court that they have included Sections 16 (terrorism) and 18 (conspiracy for terrorism) of the UAPA in the charges against the accused.
The case revolves around a major security breach on the 22nd anniversary of the 2001 Parliament terror attacks on December 13, when two of the accused jumped onto the floor of the Lok Sabha, released yellow gas, and raised slogans before being overpowered by the MPs present in the House.
The Delhi High Court had on December 22 stayed a trial court's order directing Delhi Police to supply Azad a copy of the FIR till the next date of hearing, which is January 5. (IANS)