Delhi riots accused Shahrukh Pathan, who became infamous after he was seen pointing a gun at a constable during violence, has said that he got “carried away” after watching a video on YouTube about anti-CAA protests at Maujpur Chowk. According to a report in The Indian Express, Pathan joined the anti-CAA protest, pelted stones and fired at police after watching the video, his disclosure statement to police has said.
Pathan, clad in a red t-shirt and blue jeans, had opened fire during violence in northeast Delhi in February. His video was captured pointing a gun at a policeman during the riots. A photo of him brandishing the pistol had gone viral on the internet.
According to Pathan’s disclosure in court, he is a BA second year dropout and he along with his brother worked in socks manufacturing.
“On 23/02/2020 I saw on YouTube that a protest against CAA was underway at Maujpur Chowk and got excited. On 24/02/2020 around 11 am, I went to Maujpur Chowk, where two groups, pro-CAA and anti-CAA, started pelting stones at each other. I also started pelting stones, and I also had a pistol with me, which I pointed at police officers and fired. I can identify the other accused from the protest footage and help in their arrest. I made a mistake, please forgive me,” he said.
Pathan’s name has figured in two cases filed by the police. Police have charged him with rioting and other relevant sections for pointing a gun at head constable Deepak Dahiya during the riots on February 24.
Pathan had gone missing after the incident but was arrested from Uttar Pradesh in March. He has been in judicial custody since then.
According to the IE report, Pathan is also named in the chargesheet filed in connection with the Maujpur violence on February 24. Besides Pathan, four others who have been named in the chargesheet are Salman, Gulfam, Aatir and Osama — all in judicial custody.
The chargesheet said Maujpur Chowk was being used as “a symbolic place by anti-CAA and NRC protestors since long, where they used to come and light candles to signify their protest and went back afterwards”.
In the present case, two constables Raman and Deepak sustained injuries due to stone pelting. Passerby Rohit Shukla also suffered gunshot injuries.
The chargesheet said Raman could not identify the rioters who injured him. Rohit identified Aatir, Gulfam and Osama when their photographs were shown to him.
A third witness, a local belan maker, disclosed the name of one Sajjad after he was shown CCTV footage from Gali 13 in Brahmpuri. But police said this was far away from the present incident spot. According to police, accused Sajjad was not directly a part of the mob at Maujpur Chowk. But since the witness confirmed Sajjad’s presence at the Main Jafrabad road, police said he was a “part of the menacing mob, which was on the move causing riots”.
Sajjad has not been traced by police, the chargesheet said.
Last week, the Delhi High Court had denied bail to Shahrukh Pathan and said that “his intention was to become a hero” and “now he will have to face the law”. Shahrukh had sought bail on the ground that he has to take care of his 76-year-old father who is unwell and has no one to look after him.
Violent protests against the passage of Citizenship (Amendment) Act by Parliament in December 2019 triggered violent protests across the county. The protests took a deadly turn in Delhi in February when pro and anti CAA protesters clashed with each other. Riots in northeast Delhi killed over 50 people and left over 200 seriously injured. Riots in the notional capital coincided with the state visit of US President Donald Trump.