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Delhi Court Shootout: Police files suggestions on security, HC asks others to file reports

The SC bench asked other stakeholders, including the Centre, Delhi government and various bar associations to give their suggestions so that they could be incorporated in the order. 

A shootout took place at a district court in Rohini, New Delhi. (Image: PTI)

New Delhi: The Delhi Police told the Delhi High Court on Tuesday, that it has filed suggestions on maintaining security at the courts. This comes after the recent Rohini courtroom firing that killed three people. A bench of Chief Justice D N Patel and Justice Jyoti Singh asked other stakeholders, including the Centre, Delhi government and various bar associations to also give their suggestions so that they could be incorporated in the order. 

“All other respondents shall file a report or affidavit on suggestions which shall be incorporated in our order for the safety of advocates and all others appearing in courts in Delhi,” the bench said. Further hearing of the matter has been scheduled on October 12. 

Chetan Sharma, the Additional Solicitor General representing the Centre and Delhi Police, said that the police has filed its suggestions on the issue. The court also issued fresh notices to various bar associations and asked them to file their reports.

The Delhi High Court on September 30 initiated a petition regarding security at the courts in the national capital, in view of the shootout that took place on September 24 at a Rohini courtroom. 

ALSO READ: Delhi HC Takes Suo Motu Cognizance, Seeks Suggestions On Security

The court stated that there was a need for proper and effective deployment of a sufficient number of police personnel in courts. The Delhi Police in its status report filed through Delhi government standing counsel Santosh Kumar Tripathi, made several suggestions. Tripathi said that use of technology should be maximised and physical presence of parties ought to be resorted to in extreme and compelling circumstances.

The status report also stated that the identity cards of lawyers entering the court premises should be checked. In addition, authorized vehicles should be allowed entry inside the premises only after proper checking with security equipment. The police stated that the outdated security gadgets shall be replaced with high resolution CCTV and monitors in the court premises. 360 degree vehicle scanning with RF Tag/bar code reader facilities, scanners for luggage and bag checking and scanners for explosives and NDPS checking shall also be put in place.

The Delhi Police was represented through Ajay Digpaul, the Standing Counsel for Central Government. The High Court had earlier issued notices to the Delhi Police, Delhi Government, Central Government, as well as the Delhi High Court Bar Association, directing the suggestions be filed on the issue of maintaining security at courts in the form of an affidavit or a report.

The bench said that there was a need for a fool-proof entry system in the court premises including installation of metal detectors, under-vehicle surveillance system, CCTV cameras at strategic points, proper training of police personnel as well as a regular meeting of all stakeholders. 

On September 24, Jailed gangster Jitendra Gogi and his two assailants posed as lawyers and were killed inside the Rohini courtroom in a dramatic shootout that also witnessed the police fire bullets in retaliation, the officials had said. Video footage of the incident captured the policemen and lawyers rushing outside in panic as gunshots rang inside the courtroom number 207. The two gunmen dressed as lawyers are suspected to be members of a rival gang ‘Tillu’, an official said, adding that over 30 shots were fired. 

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Chief Justice of India, N V Ramana expressed deep concern over the shootout inside the crowded Rohini courtroom. CJI Ramana spoke to the Delhi High Court Chief Justice in this regard and advised him to talk to the Police and the Bar to ensure that the functioning of the court is not affected. 

Justice Rekha Palli, issued a notice on September 28 to the Delhi Police and Bar Council of Delhi on a petition filed by a woman advocate. The notice stated that the issue of security in district courts in the national capital was “urgent” as lawyers may also become victims of incidents similar to Rohini court shootout.

ALSO READ: HC Asks Police To File Status Report On Plea To Enhance Security In Dist Courts

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