HRDA has issued an urgent appeal to the National Human Rights Commission of India on July 3, 2020 regarding the misuse of law, fabricated charges and continuous harassment of lawyer-activist Mr. Bilal Gulam Rasul Kagzi.
On May 29, 2020, an FIR was filed against Mr. Kagzi at the Kosamba Police Station, Surat (Rural) pertaining to a fight between two groups. While the fight broke out in the afternoon, around 50 policemen reached Mr. Kagzi’s home around 5 PM and questioned him. Preliminary inquiry by the police showed that Mr. Kagzi had not visited the place of incident and was not aware of it. However, at around 9.45 PM, his name was inserted in the FIR as the main accused, He was accused of firing a gun and charged under Sections 307, 323, 324, 225, 143, 147, 148, 149, 120 B of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and Sections 25(1)(a), 25(1)(b), 25(1-b)(a) and 27 of the Arms Act.
On June 8, 2020, fearing Mr. Kagzi’s arrest, his wife and other advocates made a written submission to the Investigation Officer Mr. Sisodia, but he refused it and asked them to get out of the police station without giving them an FIR copy. Mr. Kagzi’s advocate colleagues approached the Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP), Surat (Rural), explained his innocence and produced evidence of his absence at the time of the fight and the reasons behind the false accusations against him, but they did not receive a positive response.
This is the third appeal in nine months pertaining to false cases against Mr. Kagzi. In the appeal submitted on September 18, 2019, numbered as NHRC case no. 1111/6/23/2019, the last hearing on January 23, 2020 ordered SP, Surat to submit a report by March 14, 2020, which was not complied with. In case of NHRC case no. 324/6/23/2020, the action-taken report us due to be submitted by the Gujarat DGP on July 13, 2020.