Warrant for Maulana Syed Ahmed Bukhari, cops ordered to execute it

A Delhi court has issued a non-bailable warrant (NBW) against Shahi Imam of Jama Masjid, Maulana Syed Ahmed Bukhari, in connection with a criminal case and directed police to arrest and produce him in court.

Slamming the Delhi Police for failing to execute an earlier warrant against him, Metropolitan Magistrate Rajinder Singh issued a fresh NBW against Bukhari. Despite a warrant, the Shahi Imam remained absent and brought court proceedings in the matter to a halt, he said.

Issuing the warrant, the Magistrate referred to an earlier court order that reproached the Police department, including the Commissioner of Police, for not having the "courage" to execute the warrant against Bukhari in the criminal case lodged against him and two others in 2001.

The Magistrate observed that legal provisions entailed initiating the proceedings of declaring Bukhari a proclaimed offender, but doing so would "undermine the authority of law."

"In my considered opinion, declaring accused Ahmed Bukhari a proclaimed offender would be a mockery of law and it would provide an easy escape route to the accused. It is surprising and shocking as well to see the police force not able to execute the NBW issued against Bukhari. Such inaction by police cannot be tolerated," he said in his order last week. A copy of the order was made available only now.

The court has ordered the station house officer of Lodhi Colony to "personally" execute the warrant by July 17 and show up in court on the next date with a report. The report has to be forwarded by the DCP concerned.

The FIR, lodged with Lodhi Colony police station, had accused Bukhari along with two others Habib-ur-Rehman and Nafisa of rioting, obstructing and assaulting public servants from discharging their duties.

The alleged incident took place on September 3, 2001, when police and civic agencies officials were reportedly trying to remove encroachment from near CGO Complex in Lodhi Colony. But a mob, led by Bukhari, reportedly assaulted them.

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