In its charge sheet filed under FIR 59, that deals with the alleged conspiracy behind the Delhi riots, the Delhi Police has downplayed the allegations against BJP leader Kapil Mishra that were raised when the riots were still unfolding.
The entire charge sheet is focused on building the case that the communal violence, which killed 38 Muslims and 15 Hindus in February 2020, was caused by those who protested against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA). The narrative is that the Chakka Jam or road blockade was ‘not intended to create traffic chaos, but to ensure communal skirmish.’
The most important part of the 17,000-odd page charge sheet is a section titled ‘Final Report’ that has around 2,700 pages compiling the key findings of the Delhi Police.
In this section, BJP leader Kapil Mishra finds a brief mention. This is despite the fact that he was seen making a speech at northeast Delhi’s Maujpur, barely a kilometre away from Jafrabad, which can be called the epicentre of the violence. A video of Mishra, standing by senior police officials, went viral. He was seen telling the protesters and the police that if they did not “clear the roads in three days, they’ll have to get it done”
The mention, however, has nothing to do with a probe into his alleged involvement. Rather, he has been mentioned because his name came up in the conversations of the Delhi Protest Support Group, a WhatsApp group that consists of several well-known anti-CAA protesters and lies at the core of the police’s ‘conspiracy’ claim.
Specific Place Where BJP Leader Kapil Mishra’s Name Surfaces
At 12:50 am on 24 February, United Against Hate member Khalid Saifi posted in the group, “A complaint against Kapil Mishra filed at ps. Jafrabad Delhi for promoting enmity and committing riot in Jafrabad area today on 23/02/2020 by Adv Rukhsar Ahmed, Adv Nadimuzzama, Adv Mohd Danish, Adv Mohd Nadim, Adv Mohd Akram, Adv Mohd Zakir.” The violence had erupted in north-east Delhi on the afternoon of 23 February. Kapil Mishra had come and given a speech earlier that day.
Other members of the group praised the filing of the complaint in their replies to Saifi’s update. However, while analysing the chats that transpired in the thick of the riots, the police viewed the complaint against Mishra differently.
Just before citing Saifi’s message in the charge sheet, the police cited its own observation on the matter, saying:
"“Indicative chats corroborating the fear of conspirators from being exposed. Conspirators resorted to shifting blame by creating a false narrative and threatened the whistleblowers”." - Delhi Police Charge Sheet under FIR 59
the “conspirators” to create a “false narrative” out of “fear of being exposed”. According to the police, the aim of the “conspirators” was to blame the violence on law enforcement agencies.
“The conspirators, panicked by the behavior of few of their group members, decided to deploy the ultimate Guerilla strategy of blaming the law enforcement for the carnage that had resulted in the pursuance of their conspiracy,” the charge sheet states a little before the mention of the complaint against Kapil Mishra.
However, the police did reportedly question Kapil Mishra.
According to a report in The Indian Express, Kapil Mishra in his statement said that he hadn’t given any speech and that he had informed the police about his dharna at Maujpur. The Quint had earlier reported that several complaints had been filed by Delhi violence survivors against Mishra, but the cases hadn’t been pursued by the police.
One such complaint, filed on 23 February, said:
"Mr Kapil Mishra, along with a few of his henchmen who were armed with guns, swords, tridents, spears, sticks, stones, bottles, etc., gathered there and started chanting communal and casteist slogans and thereafter Mr Kapil Mishra started giving a communal and inciteful speech (sic)".
The full details of the complaint against Kapil Mishra as well as the allegations against him in the Delhi Minorities Commission fact-finding report can be found here.
The complete details of the DPSG WhatsApp group and the chats that took place in it, can be found in this investigative report by The Quint.
. Read more on India by The Quint.Delhi Riots: Police Calls Allegations Against Kapil Mishra FalseLatest News: AK Dixit Appointed New Administrator of PMC Bank . Read more on India by The Quint.