The Supreme Court on Monday granted bail to CPI (Maoist) activist Narayan Sanyal (78) and suspended life sentence awarded to him in a six-year-old sedition case. A Chhattisgarh trial court had in 2010 found him guilty of committing sedition.
A bench of justices G S Singhvi and S J Mukhopadhaya released Sanyal considering his age and the fact that he has already spent over six years in jail since his arrest in 2006. The court, however, left it to the trial court to impose conditions for his release on bail.
Advocate Nitya Ramakrishnan opposed the state government’s contentions and said the court should consider the age of Sanyal and grant him bail.
Sanyal was convicted along with People’s Union of Civil Liberties’ (PUCL) vice-president Binayak Sen and Kolkata businessman Piyush Guha for colluding with Maoists in expanding their network to fight the state. The SC had on April 15, 2011, granted bail to Sen, while suspending his sentence.
A Raipur court had on December 24, 2010 declared Sanyal, Sen and Guha guilty of committing sedition and criminal conspiracy.
The trio was also punished under various provisions of the Prevention of Unlawful Activities Act and sentenced to five-year jail term. A concurrent imprisonment of 10 years was also given to Sanyal separately for being a member of a terrorist outfit.