KOCHI: EXAMINATION of witnesses in the case related to conduct of a secret meeting at a lodge in Mavelikkara by the Revolutionary Democratic Front (RDF), a frontal organisation of the CPI(Maoist), is progressing at the the NIA Court here, and the trial in the case is expected to be completed by month-end.
NIA Judge S Santhosh Kumar examined 41 witnesses so far, and is currently examining the investigation officials. The trial is being held in-camera, a procedure in which only people who are involved in the case are permitted.
“Of the 85 witnesses in the case, only 55 will be examined. The trial procedure is expected to conclude by month-end. The verdict in the case is expected to be pronounced in one or two months,” said NIA officials.
Recently, the NIA Court had issued non-bailable arrest warrant against K J Johnson, a circle-inspector of the Kerala Police who was involved in the preliminary investigation. The warrant was issued after the officer failed to appear before the court, despite being summoned twice. However, it was later found that the circle-inspector was hospitalised.
The accused in the case are Rajesh Madhavan of Mavelikkara; Tamil Nadu-native Gopal who is a scientist with the Indira Gandhi Centre for Atomic Research-Kalpakkam; Devarajan of Kollam; Bahuleyan of Thiruvananthapuram and Ajay Kumar alias Mannor Ajayan of Muvattupuzha. It is the first NIA case registered against a Maoist group in Kerala.
According to the prosecution, the Mavelikkara Police raided the lodge in which the meeting was organised in December 2012 and arrested the accused, based on a tip-off. The meeting was allegedly organised to form a students’ wing of the RDF in Kerala.
In a major twist in the case, a few days after the raid, the investigation officer committed suicide, reportedly due to job-related stress and health issues.