Delhi riots cases: Court concerned over absence of Special Public Prosecutors

New Delhi: A Delhi court has expressed concern over the absence of Special Public Prosecutors (SPPs) appearing for the state in Delhi riots cases.

Additional Sessions Judge Virender Bhat on Thursday noted that two prosecution witnesses – Prempal and Shivam – are present in the case, but cannot be examined in the absence of Special Public Prosecutor Amit Prasad.

No SPPs were present before the court, though all accused were produced from judicial custody.

The court said SPP Prasad had informed that he is busy with some matter in the high court. Thereafter, another SPP D.K. Bhatia, was called but also expressed his inability to appear in the case. After that, another SPP Madhukar Pandey was called but also did not respond positively.

This is the state of affairs with regards to these riot cases which are very sensitive in nature and for which this special court was set up, the court observed.

These cases were assigned to a panel of SPPs formed by the police so as to ensure proper and effective prosecution of these cases. But this court has found in several cases, the SPPs are not appearing in the court due to which cases have to be adjourned without conducting any proceeding and resulting in delays, it said.

Defence counsel have also vehemently objected to the conduct of the Special PPs saying that the matters are being adjourned unnecessarily and the accused’s jail time gets prolonged for no fault of theirs.

Earlier also, the judge had communicated this to the DCP North East Delhi. Further, he sent a copy of the order to him to appoint SPPs to represent the state and sought a report within a week. The witnesses were let go unexamined.