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Wednesday, Sep 18, 2019

Bhima Koregaon: Pune police initiate steps to produce activists before city court

No breathing space for activists who have had bail pleas rejected, says Shivaji Bodkhe, joint commissioner of police

pune Updated: Oct 27, 2018 17:31 IST
Yogesh Joshi
Yogesh Joshi
Hindustan Times, Pune
Situation at Pune court when activists were brought in connection of Koregaon Bhima violence
Situation at Pune court when activists were brought in connection of Koregaon Bhima violence(Pratham Gokhale/HT Photo)

Hours after a Pune Court rejected the bail pleas of civil rights activists Arun Ferreira, Vernon Gonsalves and Sudha Bharadwaj who were under house arrest, the Pune police took their custody and initiated steps to produce them before a city court by Saturday, officials monitoring the investigations said.

A senior police official said Ferreira and Gonsalves were taken into custody from Thane and Mumbai respectively. Sudha Bharadwaj who was under house arrest in Chhattisgarh was taken into custody by another team.

Earlier in the day, additional sessions judge KD Vadane rejected the bail pleas of Bharadwaj, Ferreira and Gonsalves, three of the five activists who were arrested by Pune police for their alleged maoist links and also refused to grant them any relief by staying their arrest to enable them to approach the High Court.

“These activists were already arrested by the police although the Supreme Court had offered them relief saying that they be kept under house arrest for four weeks. Now that the Pune court has given its ruling, we will go ahead and produce them before the court to seek their police custody,” said Joint Commissioner of Police Shivaji Bodkhe.

In the case of the other two activists, Gautam Navlakha’s arrest was quashed by Delhi High court previously while poet Varavara Rao had approached the Hyderabad High Court for bail.

Soon after the five activists were arrested by Pune police on August 28, the Supreme Court had intervened and directed that they be kept under house arrest at their residences and granted four weeks for the Pune court to decide on the bail plea by activists.

Bodkhe said today’s court order has vindicated the police action. “The material presented by Police in the court has been taken into account. With this order, relief granted by Supreme Court to the activists is over,” said Bodkhe.

In his order, Judge Vadane said, “At this stage, from material collected by investigating agency, prima facie, it reveals involvement of present applicants. Moreover, the investigation is at very crucial stage, therefore, in my view, the present applicants/accused are not entitled to be released on bail. Hence the applications being devoid of merit, liable to be rejected”

First Published: Oct 27, 2018 15:41 IST