Parliament security breach case: 5 accused say ‘tortured to confess’

New Delhi: Five of the six people arrested in the Parliament security breach case told a court on January 31 that they were allegedly being tortured by Delhi Police to accept their association with opposition parties. The submission was made before Additional Sessions Judge Hardeep Kaur, who extended the judicial custody of all the six accused till March 1.

Five of the accused — Manoranjan D, Sagar Sharma, Lalit Jha, Amol Shinde and Mahesh Kumawat — told the court that they were forced to sign about 70-odd blank papers.

“Accused persons were tortured/given electric shocks to sign and confess (to) the commission of a crime under the UAPA and their association with national political parties… two accused persons were forced to write on the paper about their association with the political party/leader of the opposition political party,” the accused told the court in a joint petition.

The court sought a reply from the police in the matter and fixed February 17 for hearing the application. The sixth accused in the case is Neelam Azad, who had earlier alleged before the court that police had forced her to sign several blank papers.

Azad’s application is currently pending before the court. “During (after/before the conduction of polygraph/narco/brain mapping), the associated persons conducting the tests pressed two accused persons to name a political party/leader about their involvement.

“Each was asked about their current/old mobile phone numbers and made them visit the Airtel/BSNL/Vodafone offices for issuance of SIM cards of old mobile numbers and current SIM card numbers for reasons best known to the prosecution. During this illegal drill, accused persons gave their biometrics/signed for issuance of SIM cards,” the joint petition stated.

The accused persons claimed they were forced to provide all their social media accounts, email, and phone passwords. In a major security breach on the anniversary of the 2001 Parliament terror attack, Sagar Sharma and Manoranjan D jumped into the Lok Sabha chamber from the public gallery during Zero Hour on December 13 last year, released yellow gas from canisters and shouted slogans before they were overpowered by some MPs.

Around the same time, two other accused — Amol Shinde and Neelam Azad — sprayed colored gas from canisters while shouting “tanashahi nahi chalegi” outside the Parliament premises. These four were taken into custody from the spot, while Lalit Jha and Mahesh Kumawat were arrested later.

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