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Elgar Parishad case: Varavara Rao’s bail plea rejected

Rao wanted temporary bail to visit his home town, Hyderabad, to perform the post-death rituals of his sister-in-law who died on April 22.

pune Updated: Apr 30, 2019 13:38 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Pune
Elgar Parishad case,Varavara Rao,bail plea rejected
Varavara Rao.(HT FILE PHOTO)

PUNE The temporary bail application of Varavara Rao, activist and poet, has been rejected by a Pune court on Monday.

Rao wanted temporary bail to visit his home town, Hyderabad, to perform the post-death rituals of his sister-in-law who died on April 22.

Rao was arrested in connection with the Elgar Parishad held at the end of 2017, which is believed to have caused violence during the Bhima Koregaon celebrations held on January 1, 2018.

“The application was rejected by the court today (Monday),” said Ujjwala Pawar, district government pleader.

The application was heard and declined in the court of special judge KD Vadane. Rao was not present in court when the application was rejected.

The prosecution, objecting to the temporary bail to Rao, cited a letter to Pune’s joint commissioner of police by Hyderabad superintendent of police (Special Intelligence Branch) which stated, “Considering seriousness of the crime, there is a possibility that accused may abscond if he is allowed attending the last rites of his relative”.

“Moreover, there is a possibility of a serious attack on the police party, who will be deputed for an escort, by Naxals,” the letter added.

The prosecution also informed the court that the letter stated that as per Hindu traditions and customs, there is no established procedure and norms to attend “pedda karma” (10th-day ritual) by the brother-in-law of a deceased who is survived by her children.

After hearing the arguments and going through the written submissions from the prosecution, judge Vadane Monday rejected the temporary bail application.

Rao was first arrested on August 28 last year, along with activists Sudha Bhardwaj, Arun Ferreira, Vernon Gonsalves and Gautam Navalakha.

However, the Supreme Court later asked the police to place them under house arrest.

On November 17, Rao was re-arrested by Pune police.

The prosecution, in its submission, said the accused is an active member of the proscribed CPI (Maoist) and along with other accused, was involved in unlawful and terrorist activities, and that investigation so far had revealed that he was involved in raising and distributing funds to smuggle arms and ammunition.

“There is ample of evidence against the accused and the charge sheet too has been filed and therefore it is not desirable to release the accused on temporary bail,” according to the prosecution. (with inputs from PTI)

First Published: Apr 30, 2019 13:38 IST