New Delhi: Two days after the Bombay High Court started to figure in conversations pertaining to an English literature classic ‘War and Peace’ by Leo Tolstoy- a dramatic turn of events took place on Thursday.
On Wednesday, while hearing the Bhima-Koregaon case, the Bombay High Court asked Elgar Parishad-Bhima Koregaon case accused Vernon Gonsalves to explain why he kept “objectionable material” as a copy of ‘War and Peace’ and some CDs at his home.
A single-judge Bench of Justice Sarang Kotwal hearing the bail plea of Gonsalves and others said that “such books” and CDs prima facie indicated they contained some material against the State. (It was seized from Gonsalves’ house in Mumbai during raids conducted a year ago.)
This soon prodded people to take objection of the high court doubting intents of a person for reading an English novel that is on Russia during the Napoleonic wars.
A Twitter hashtag #warandpeace started to trend soon with people sharing pictures with a copy of the novel.
On Thursday then it surfaced that the Bombay High Court was referring to “War and Peace in Junglemahal”, edited by Biswajit Roy and not Leo Tolstoy’s book.
Lawyer Yug Chaudhary, appearing for one of the accused informed that the book recovered from Gonsalves is ‘War and Peace in Junglemahal: People, State and Maoists’, edited by Biswajit Roy, not the ‘War and Peace’ by Leo Tolstoy,” Chaudhary told the court.
In response, Justice S. Kotwal, to whom the statements were attributed said that he was well aware that Tolstoy’s “War and Peace” (1869) was a literary classic and he never intended to suggest that all books seized by the Pune Police during the Bhima-Koregaon and Elgar Parishad investigations were incriminating.
Even Gonsalves’ lawyer informed the court that none of the books seized from his client’s home were banned by the government.
With inputs from agencies