Three more accused, including activist Navlakha, seek discharge in Elgar case

While Navlakha and Babu are currently in jail under judicial custody, Bharadwaj is out on bail.

Published: 27th September 2022 09:47 PM  |   Last Updated: 27th September 2022 09:47 PM   |  A+A-

Civil rights activists Gautam Navlakha and Anand Teltumbde

Civil rights activist Gautam Navlakha (Photo | PTI)

By PTI

MUMBAI: Activists Gautam Navlakha, Sudha Bharadwaj and Delhi University professor Hany Babu, all accused in the Elgar Parishad-Maoist links case, on Tuesday moved discharge applications before the special National Investigation Agency (NIA) court here.

The trio filed separate applications before special judge Rajesh J Katariya through their advocate Yug Chaudhry.

Chaudhry claimed the case against his clients was "completely bogus, made up of a stack of inadmissible evidence, consisting of innuendos, rumours and shadows". There was no evidence worth the name, he maintained.

It is indeed sad that such eminent people have to stay in jail for so long only because of the draconian nature of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA), the anti-terror law under which they have been booked, the lawyer added.

ALSO READ| Elgar case: Giving Varavara Rao nod to travel to Hyderabad will prolong framing of charges, says court

While Navlakha and Babu are currently in jail under judicial custody, Bharadwaj is out on bail.

Meanwhile, the court on Tuesday heard the arguments on the discharge plea of another accused, Sudhir Dhawale. The arguments will continue on Wednesday.

ALSO READ: Arrested activists being systematically denied medical treatment, claim family members

The judge said as per an order passed by the Supreme Court, the special court is required to frame charges against the accused and decide on the pending discharge applications within three months from the order dated August 18.

The discharge pleas of some other accused - Jyoti Jagtap, Anand Teltumbde and Mahesh Raut - were also pending before the court.

More than a dozen activists and academicians have been named as accused in the case.

The case relates to alleged inflammatory speeches made at the Elgar Parishad conclave held in Pune on December 31, 2017, which the police claimed triggered violence the next day near the Koregaon-Bhima war memorial on the outskirts of the western Maharashtra city.

The Pune Police had also claimed the conclave was organised by people with alleged Maoist links.

An FIR was lodged by the Pune Police on January 8, 2018 under various sections of the Indian Penal Code and the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.

The NIA later took over the probe into the matter. Discharge is a legal remedy available to an accused who thinkS false allegations have been made against him.

If the evidence presented before the court concerned is not sufficient to prove the offence and in the absence of any prima facie case against him, he is entitled to be discharged.



Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp