Chandrashekhar Azad, the founder and chief of Dalit outfit Bhim Army, has been slapped with the stringent National Security Act (NSA), a day after the Allahabad High Court granted him bail in four cases. After spending almost three months in jail, Azad faces arrest again as Yogi Adityanath government invoked the NSA against him. Earlier, he was arrested from Himachal Pradesh on June 8 in connection with Thakur-Dalit clash in Saharanpur district. Saharanpur SSP, Bablu Kumar, while confirming that Chandrashekhar has been booked under the NSA, said the initiative was taken after the approval of district magistrate. District Magistrate (DM) PK Pandey, said Azad still faces trial for serious offences in three cases. Therefore, the process of invoking NSA against him was started soon after his bail plea was submitted in the Allahabad High Court.
The NSA, empowers the police to provide for preventive detention in certain cases and for matters connected therewith. Earlier, in September, the Saharanpur administration had invoked NSA against Sompal alias Sonu (25), Sudhir (28) and Vilas alias Raju (24) — all from the Thakur community. They were also accused in cases related to the Dalit-Thakur clash. Earlier on Thursday, the Allahabad HC granted bail to Chandrashekhar. Justice Mukhtar Ahmed allowed him bail, after accepting the argument that neither any specific role had been assigned to the applicant in the FIR nor it was alleged that he was possessing any weapon at the time of the riot.
Advocate I M Khan, appearing on behalf of Azad pleaded that his client has been falsely implicated in the case. Khan also alleged that the members of Pratap Sena outfit entered into a locality of families belonging to scheduled castes in Saharanpur and burned down houses.