Delhi Court convicts AAP MLA Akhilesh Pati Tripathi for beating a law student in 2020

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A First Information Report (FIR) was filed in February 2020 in response to a complaint made by Sanjeev Kumar, who claimed that Akhilesh Pati Tripathi (AAP MLA) stopped him and his friend Raj Kishore at Lal Bagh and beat him with "heavy objects" and used "words prohibited under the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act".

A Delhi Court on Saturday 'convicted' Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) MLA Akhilesh Pati Tripathi for beating and voluntarily causing hurt to a law student namely, Sanjeev Kumar in 2020.

Special Judge Geetanjali Goel of the Rouse Avenue Court ruled that Prosecution has proved the guilt of the accused beyond reasonable doubt for the offence under Section 323 (voluntarily causing hurt) IPC and he is convicted for the same.

“However, he is acquitted of the offences under Sections 341(wrongful restraint), 506(1) (criminal intimidation) of IPC and under Sections 3(1)(r) and 3(1)(s) of the Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989”, the judge added.

In February 2020, a First Information Report (FIR) was registered on a complaint filed by Sanjeev Kumar wherein he stated that he along with his friend Raj Kishore was stopped by Tripathi at Lal Bagh and then he along with his supporters beat him with "heavy objects" and "used words prohibited under the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act" in order to tarnish his and his parents’ image.

Kumar in his complaint alleged that Tripathi said "Chamar ko Maro, iska baap bahut bada neta ban raha hai," and "iss chamar ko iss ki aukat dekha do”.

Taking note of the statements of the witnesses and other documentary evidence the court noted that the complainant law student and Tripathi both had sustained injuries in the altercation that had taken place. It was also noted that Kumar did not file the complaint on the date of the incident i.e. February 7, instead, he filed it on February 10.

The court noted that there was “no cogent” reason for the delay in filing the complaint and that the FIR was registered on March 1, 2020.

The court said that it is difficult to believe the prosecution’s case that the accused had uttered any caste-related remarks against the complainant. “Much less to show any intention to humiliate or intimidate the complainant as he belonged to Scheduled Caste”, it said.

The court observed that though the complainant had stated about the accused abusing him by caste name, in the circumstances of the case as referred to above the offences under Sections 3(1)(r) and (s) of the SC/ST cannot be said to be established in the present case.

“However, it cannot be discounted that the incident had taken place and the MLC of the complainant shows simple injuries. The MLC of the accused also shows simple injuries but on that basis, the offence committed by the accused cannot be washed away. In view of the same, the offence under Section 323 IPC (voluntarily causing hurt) would be made out against the accused”, the court further observed.

Case Title: State v. Akhilesh Pati Tripathi

Statue: The Indian Penal Code; the Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act