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Bombay high court rejects pre-arrest bail plea of accused in Bhima-Koregaon violence

Milind Ekbote contended that he was not even remotely linked with the caste violence near Pune

mumbai Updated: Feb 03, 2018 00:50 IST
Kanchan Chaudhari
Kanchan Chaudhari
Hindustan Times
Mumbai,Bhima-Koregaon,Milind Ekbote
Milind Ekbote was booked for allegedly stoking violence at Bhima-Koregaon near Pune.(HT photo)

The Bombay high court on Friday rejected anticipatory bail application of Milind Ekbote, president of right-wing organisation Hindu Jan-Jagran Samitee and a prime accused in the January 1 Bhima-Koregaon violence.

He had approached the high court, contending that he was not even remotely linked with the caste violence near Pune. The unrest left one person dead and several others injured.

Ekbote claimed that he was falsely implicated in the case. His lawyer Nitin Pradhan also raised questions about applicability of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989. A division bench of justices SC Dharmadhikari and Bharati Dangre, however, found that the provisions of the 1989 Act were properly applied. The bench rejected Pradhan’s plea for more time to approach the Supreme Court.

The bench expressed anxiety about the caste violence. The judges wondered why only in certain matters caste comes into picture. They said that in our day-to-day life “we do not enquire about the caste of the persons we deal with”.

“Today’s communication system perhaps spreads the wrong things rather quickly,” observed the bench. The comments came after the lawyer complained that Ekbote’s family members had been hounded for the past three days. The judges said all purported ‘harassment’ could have been averted had Ekbote surrendered.

Besides Ekbote, Sambhaji Bhide, president of Shivjagar Pratishthan, was also booked for allegedly stoking violence during the bicentenary celebration of a British-Maratha battle.

First Published: Feb 03, 2018 00:50 IST