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Elgar Parishad Case Transfer: Bombay HC Seeks Response of NIA, Centre and Maha Govt

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L-R: Gautam Navlakha, Varavara Rao, Arun Ferreira, Sudha Bharadwaj and Vernon Gonsalves have been among the many activists arrested by Pune police.

In their petition filed final week by means of advocate SB Talekar, Gadling and Dhawale had alleged that the switch of the probe was carried out by the Central authorities, after the BJP misplaced energy in Maharashtra and that the choice was “politically motivated”.

  • PTI Mumbai
  • Last Updated: June 23, 2020, 4:51 PM IST

The Bombay High Court on Tuesday sought responses from the National Investigation Agency (NIA) and Central and Maharashtra governments on a petition filed by two accused difficult switch of the Elgar Parishad case probe from the Pune police to the NIA.

A division bench of Justices SS Shinde and Abhay Ahuja directed the Union authorities, the NIA and the state authorities to file their affidavits, and posted the petition for additional listening to on July 14.

The petition was filed by human rights lawyer Surendra Gadling and activist Sudhir Dhawale who’re lodged in Taloja jail in Navi Mumbai.

In their petition filed final week by means of advocate SB Talekar, Gadling and Dhawale had alleged that the switch of the probe was carried out by the Central authorities after the BJP misplaced energy in Maharashtra and that the choice was “politically motivated”.

“The transfer order is arbitrary, discriminatory, unjust and violative of the fundamental rights of the accused persons in the case,” the petition mentioned.

“The then BJP-led state government with Hindutva agency used the incident of violence at Koregaon Bhima in Pune in December 2017- January 2018 to target influential Dalit thinkers by showing theElgarParishadmeeting as part of a Maoist movement,” the petition mentioned.

It added that “political expediency” can’t be a floor to invoke powers of the NIA Act and switch probe.

The petition additional claimed that the NIA Act, 2008, doesn’t allow switch of a case after completion of investigation and graduation of trial, significantly when there aren’t any compelling circumstances necessitating such a switch.

The case, through which a number of different rights activists have been arrested and accused of having Moist hyperlinks, was transferred from the Pune police to the NIA on January 24 this yr.

Gadling and Dhawale have been arrested in June 2018 and are presently lodged on the Taloja jail in Navi Mumbai.

Apart from Gadling and Dhawale, the opposite arrested accused embody Rona Wilson, Anand Teltumbde, Gautam Navlakha, Shoma Sen, Vernon Gonsalves, Varavara Rao, Arun Ferreira and Sudha Bharadwaj.

They have been accused of having Maoist hyperlinks and have been booked below the stringent provisions of the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) and different provisions of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).

According to prosecution, inflammatory speeches and provocative statements made on the Elgar Parishad conclave held in Pune on December 31, 2017 triggered caste violence at Koregaon Bhima the subsequent day. Police suspect that the conclave was backed by Maoists.


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