New Delhi: The Bombay High Court on Friday granted interim protection from arrest to Gautam Navlakha, who is an accused in Bhima Koregaon case, till November 1. Also Read - Bhima Koregaon Case: Tribal Activist Stan Swamy Sent To Jail Till October 23, Chargesheet Filed Against 7
A division bench of Justices Ranjit More and Bharati Dangre adjourned the hearing on Navlakha’s plea till November 1. Navlakha, in a petition filed through advocate Yug Chowdhary, has sought quashing of the FIR lodged against him by Pune Police. Also Read - Bhima Koregaon Case: NIA Files Charge-Sheet Against 8 People Including DU Professor, Activist Stan Swamy
The high court, however, refused to grant any interim relief to professor Anand Teltumbde, a co-accused in the case who has not been arrested yet. He moved the high court Friday afternoon after his anticipatory (pre-arrest) bail plea was rejected by a lower court. The high court said it will hear his plea on November 1. Also Read - Rival NCP Factions Faceoff in Aurangabad Even as Party Bickers With Ally Shiv Sena Over Bhima Koregaon, NPR
Government lawyer Aruna Pai opposed the pleas of both Navlakha and Teltumbde. Police have enough evidence against the two as well as the other accused, she said.
Advocate Chowdhary, on the other hand, said the charges against Navlakha and the other accused are baseless, and they are “professors and intellectuals working in public interest for decades”.
Arun Ferreira, another accused in the case whose house arrest ends Friday, also approached the high court seeking extension of the house arrest.
But the division bench did not grant him any extension, saying that it will hear him on November 1.
Navlakha, Varavara Rao, Ferreira, Vernon Gonsalves and Sudha Bharadwaj were arrested on August 28 for allegedly having links with Maoists in the aftermath of violence at Bhima Koregaon in Pune district on January 1.
Police alleged that Maoists had supported the Elgar Parishad conclave in Pune which led to the violence.
Navlakha was released by the Delhi High Court after which he moved the Bombay High Court seeking to quash the FIR.
(With PTI inputs)