Bhima-Koregaon violence: Ekbote remanded in police custody in Pune

Call records of the Samasta Hindu Aghadi leader to be probed

pune Updated: Mar 16, 2018 17:03 IST
Shalaka Shinde
Shalaka Shinde
Hindustan Times, Pune
Milind Ekbote (In white scarf and cap) arrested from his residence at Shivajinagar by Pune Rural Police after his bail plea was rejected by court in the Koregaon Bhima violance case in Pune. (HT PHOTO )

The Pune rural police will investigate the call records of Samasta Hindu Aghadi leader Milind Ekbote, who was arrested on Wednesday in connection with the Bhima-Koregaon violence on January 1. The 57-year-old on Thursday was remanded to four days police custody by a Sessions Court in Shivajinagar.

Advocate Ujjwala Pawar, public prosecutor, in the case while seeking police custody argued that the police needed Ekbote’s custody to recover a mobile phone through which he had communicated with some people and given directions.

The prosecution while seeking 14 days of police custody for Ekbote said his custodial interrogation is needed to find out the location of printing of the pamplets, distributed ahead of January 1 event at Koregaon to commemorate the 200th anniversary of war between Peshwas and British.

Pawar also told the court that the police need to investigate the proceedings of a meeting called by Ekbote in Perne where the pamplets were distributed, triggering violence.

"Ekbote was in contact with the people causing violence. Ekbote at the moment is not cooperating with the police and claiming that his mobile phone is lost,” said Pawar seeking Ekbote’s custody.

According to public prosecutor, the police have video recording of Ekbote's speech during the Perne meeting held days before the 200th anniversary celebration of Bhima-Koregaon battle. "He instigated violence at the meeting. The event has had a serious impact on society," Pawar said.

SK Jain, defence lawyer, argued that Ekbote's mobile phone was lost and that the call records could be obtained from the phone company without his requirement in police custody. Jain also claimed that Ekbote was present for police interrogation for the five times he was called in the past days. The government report submitted in the Supreme Court on Wednesday, however, stated that he has refused to cooperate with the police, said Pawar.

Following the arguments, additional sessions judge Pralhad Bhagure remanded Ekbote in police custody till March 19.

Ekbote has been booked under Sections 307, 143, 147, 149, 295(a), 436, 117, 153(a), 120(b) of Indian Penal Code (IPC), 3(1)(10) of Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989 and 2015, along with Sections 4/25 read with Sections 3(2)(5), 3(1)(10) of Arms Act at Shikrapur police station. The complaint in the matter was filed byAnita Ravindra Salve (39), a member of the Bahujan Republican Socialist Party. The atrocities act was invoked as the complainant belongs to a Scheduled Caste.

First Published: Mar 16, 2018 17:03 IST