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Umar Khalid Withdraws Bail Petition From SC, ‘Will Try Luck Afresh in Trial Court’

Senior advocate Kapil Sibal cited “changed circumstances” as the reason for withdrawing the petition. Khalid’s bail hearing has seen 14 adjournments in the SC.

Umar Khalid’s bail hearing has seen 14 adjournments in the SC. (PTI file photo)

New Delhi: Jailed for over four years and facing 14 adjournments of his bail hearing in the top court, former JNU scholar Umar Khalid, whose hearing was scheduled on Wednesday (February 14), withdrew his application from the Supreme Court. He will approach the trial court to seek bail afresh, his counsel Kapil Sibal said.

According to a report in Live Law, Sibal informed the bench of Justice Bela Trivedi and Pankaj Mithal that the bail petition was being withdrawn in view of the “changed circumstances”, adding that “we will try our luck in the trial court.” After which the bench deemed the petition as withdrawn.

 The former JNU student has been in jail since September 2020 in an alleged conspiracy case related to the communal violence in Northeast Delhi in February 2020. Since the past four years, Khalid has been awaiting trial under the draconian UAPA (Unlawful Activities Prevention Act) for his alleged involvement in the violence.

A Karkardooma court had denied bail to him in March 2022, after which Khalid approached the High Court, which also denied him relief in October 2022. This led him to approach the country’s topmost Supreme Court.

 In May 2023, the apex court sought the response of the Delhi Police in the matter, says a report in Bar & Bench.

Khalid’s bail hearing has seen 14 adjournments in the Supreme Court since, despite Chief Justice of India D Y Chadrachud’s ‘tareekh pe tareekh’ comment at an event expressing displeasure at repeated adjournments.

Khalid’s last hearing was listed on February 7, 2024 in an alternate list as Justices Bela Trivedi and Pankaj Mithal were occupied in a Constitution Bench.

Khalid did not receive a “single substantive bail hearing in 2023” as well as in 2024, when it came up for hearing on January 10, 24, 31, and February 1, 7 and 14 (when the petition was withdrawn).

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