KOCHI: The Kerala High Court on Tuesday sought the view of the state government on the bail plea of Swiss national Jonathan Baud, who was arrested recently from Thriprayar for allegedly attending a meeting organised in memory of a Maoist activist.
Baud, who was arrested on July 28, had been charged under section 14(b) of the Foreigners’ Act. The petition stated that the character, antecedents and the intellectual pursuits of Baud were clear from the various certificates issued by the professors in the University of Geneva. He is doing Masters in Economic History and keenly interested in history and economics. According to Baud, in the course of his travel in Kerala as part of his study he happened to see a gathering of people in Thriprayar.
He visited the place only to know about the Thriprayar temple and other historical spots in the area. Baud being a keen observer of social movements went to the venue of the meeting out of sheer curiosity. He was not aware of the background of the meeting.
Baud was the only foreigner who attended the meeting and the representatives inquired about the identity of the petitioner. Then he informed that he was from Switzerland.
Baud further submitted that registration of crime against him is illegal. There was no allegation that he was invited to the meeting. The police cannot initiate prosecution proceedings merely on the reason that the petitioner had watched a meeting.
The Kodungalloor Judicial First Class Magistrate had dismissed the bail plea of Baud.