Umar Khalid, former JNU student leader and accused in the larger Conspiracy of Delhi riots, has moved an application seeking access to a daily telephonic call facility.
The court has issued a notice to Tihar jail authorities. A similar application moved by Sharjeel Imam is also pending before the court.
Additional Sessions Judge Amitab Rawat issued notice to Tihar Jail superintendent and asked him to file a reply on the application of Umar Khalid.
The matter has been listed on January 21 for further hearing.
Umar Khalid is in judicial custody since September 2020. Last year he was granted one week’s interim bail for the wedding of his sister. Earlier, his regular bail application was dismissed in October 2022 by the division bench of the Delhi High court.
Sharjeel Imam also moved an application seeking the resumption of the Inmate phone calling facility provided to him in Tihar jail earlier. The facility was stopped in September after a circular issued by the jail authorities.
Additional Sessions Judge Amitabh Rawat had summoned the jail superintendents along with law officers. The officers had submitted that they have been following the rule.
Subsequently, the court summoned the conduct report of the accused. This matter was also listed on January 21.
The application filed on behalf of Sharjeel seeks the resumption of the Inmate phone calling facility provided to the Accused/Applicant under Rule 629 of the Delhi Prisons Rule, 2018 since he had been lodged in judicial custody.
The application moved through Advocate Ahmad Ibrahim has stated that the facility was stopped by the jail authorities without any reason or providing any opportunity for the Applicant to oppose the same and the same has not been resumed till date.
It is worth mentioning that the Applicant has been informed that he will be allowed to make one call each week as against daily calling facility which was available earlier, the plea stated.
Sharjeel Imam has been in continuous custody in the Tihar Jail since January 28, 2020 in connection with the case registered under UAPA and other sections related to Sedition.
The jail authorities regarding the reduction of the facility to a weekly basis, the Applicant was informed that the same was in accordance with a standing order of the Additional Inspector General, Prison HQs, Delhi Prisons (AIG) issued on September 2, 2022.
This order was circulated internally among jail authorities to streamline and regulate the Inmate Phone Call System facility to the extent of High-Security Prisoners/ category of prisoners specified under Rule 631 of the Delhi Prisons Rules, 2018.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)