Court re­jects AAP MLA’s ap­peal against jail term

Party stands ‘ex­posed’, al­leges BJP

The Times of India (New Delhi edition) - - Times City - [email protected] times­ TIMES NEWS NET­WORK

New Delhi: AAP MLA Som Dutt on Thurs­day suf­fered another set­back after a spe­cial court dis­missed his ap­peal against a six month jail term and Rs 2 lakh fine awarded to him for as­sault­ing a man in 2015.

Spe­cial judge Ajay Ku­mar Kuhar re­jected his ar­gu­ment that the pun­ish­ment was “harsh”. “The trial court has con­sid­ered all cir­cum­stances and awarded a sen­tence for only six months for an of­fence in which im­pris­on­ment could ex­tend up to seven years,” the judge said.

The trial court had on June 29 con­victed Dutt for as­sault dur­ing the Delhi Assem­bly elec­tions four years ago. Ad­di­tional chief metropoli­tan mag­is­trate Sa­mar Vishal had held the leg­is­la­tor from Sadar Bazar con­stituency guilty un­der Sec­tion 325 of the In­dian Pe­nal Code for caus­ing hurt to a per­son with­out provo­ca­tion.

Dutt’s coun­sels ar­gued that the med­i­cal record of the com­plainant was not to be trusted. It was fur­ther ar­gued that he was un­der the in­flu­ence of al­co­hol — a fact that was ig­nored by the trial court. Judge Kuhar, how­ever, noted that “Not only the evidence of the doctor is suf­fi­cient to prove the in­jury as griev­ous… but the com­plainant also de­posed that he suf­fered mul­ti­ple in­juries and a frac­ture near his left an­kle.”

The ap­pel­late court also took noted of the judge Vishal’s ob­ser­va­tion, “When an in­flu­en­tial per­son breaks the law, there is an im­pres­sion in his mind that he may get away with it in one way or the other. But that is not the case al­ways. Re­spect for the law is the first con­di­tion for a civilised so­ci­ety.”

As per the prose­cu­tion, dur­ing the Delhi Assem­bly elec­tions, Dutt, along with 5060 sup­port­ers, beat up one San­jeev Rana at his res­i­dence in Gu­labi Bagh. The prose­cu­tion said that Dutt and his sup­port­ers were cam­paign­ing and when Rana ob­jected, the MLA al­legedly hit him on the legs with a base­ball bat. New Delhi: With the spe­cial court award­ing a six-month sen­tence to AAP MLA Som Dutt in a case of as­sault, Delhi BJP on Thurs­day claimed the “goondaism” in the Aam Aadmi Party “stands ex­posed”.

State BJP chief Manoj Ti­wari said sev­eral AAP MLAs, in­clud­ing CM Arvind Ke­jri­wal and deputy CM Man­ish Siso­dia, have po­lice cases reg­is­tered against them, which are be­ing probed. “In the com­ing days, most AAP MLAs will be sent to jail after the in­ves­ti­ga­tion and trial is com­plete,” Ti­wari said. “The cases of cor­rup­tion and scams by AAP will also be in­ves­ti­gated when BJP comes to power in Delhi.”

Leader of the Op­po­si­tion in Delhi Assem­bly, Vi­jen­der Gupta, al­leged that chief min­is­ter Arvind Ke­jri­wal was silently “sup­port­ing and pro­mot­ing” AAP MLA’s vi­o­lence.

Som Dutt

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