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#UrbanMaoists probe: Pune court rejects bail applications of Sudha Bharadwaj, Arun Ferreira and Vernon Gonsalves

Pune Police had arrested these three activists along with two others - poet P Varavara Rao and Gautam Navlakha -- on August 28 in connection with the Elgar Parishad conclave held in Pune on December 31, which allegedly triggered violence at Koregaon Bhima the next day.

pune Updated: Oct 27, 2018 15:28 IST
Nadeem Inamdar
Nadeem Inamdar
Hindustan Times, Pune
Pune court,bail applications,Sudha Bharadwaj
Vernon Gonsalves taken to Farazkhana police station in Pune on August 29. (HT PHOTO )

Pune court on Friday rejected bail pleas of Sudha Bharadwaj, Arun Ferreira and Vernon Gonsalves, three of the five activists put under house arrest in connection with their alleged maoist links.

Additional Sessions Judge KD Vadane rejected the bail applications filed by the three activists. The Pune Police had arrested these three activists along with two others - poet P Varavara Rao and Gautam Navlakha -- on August 28 in connection with the Elgar Parishad conclave held in Pune on December 31, which allegedly triggered violence at Bhima Koregaon the next day.

Court order on bail applications

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”

The Supreme Court, however, put on hold their arrest and sent them to house arrest.

Earlier on September 28, Supreme Court while hearing on their petitions opposing arrests had asked these activists to approach lower courts for relief from the imminent arrest. The Supreme Court had given four week’s time within which Pune court had to decide on bail plea by activists.

Among the other two activists, Gautam Navlakha’s arrest has already been quashed by Delhi High court while poet Varavara Rao has approached for bail in Hyderabad HC

“We will appeal against the Sessions Court’s judgement in Bombay High court,” Dhairyasheel Patil, senior counsel representing Gonsalves, said.

The prosecution had argued against the bail of all three left leaning activists saying they have “corroborative evidence” against the activists which establishes their links with banned outfit CPI (maoist). According to prosecution, Bharadwaj was responsible for “raising funds” and sending recruits from various universities and educational institutes to forest.

The Sessions court has reserved order on bail pleas of other two activists advocate Surendra Gadling and former Nagpur University professor Shoma Sen till November 1.

First Published: Oct 26, 2018 15:14 IST