The Gauhati High Court on Monday denied bail to a 24-year-old man booked under the stringent UAP Act for allegedly making objectionable posts propagating the ideology of the banned organization (ULFA).
Perusing the case diary, the bench of Justice Kalyan Rai Surana noted that the investigation carried out so far implicates the petitioner of making objectionable posts propagating the ideology of the banned organization, which were uploaded by the petitioner on his Facebook Account
Consequently, finding that the petitioner's actions fell within the meaning of Section 39 of the UAPA [Offence relating to support given to a terrorist organization], the Court denied him bail by referring to the proviso to section 43D of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967.
Here the readers may note that proviso to Section 43(D)(5) of the UAPA prohibits a Court from granting bail to an accused, if, on a perusal of a final report filed under Section 173 Cr.P.C., the Court is of the opinion that there are reasonable grounds to believe that the accusations against such person are prima facie true.
The case in brief
The Court was dealing with the bail plea of a 24-year-old man, Abhijit Gogoi who was booked under sections 120(B)/121/121(A) IPC as well as under the UA(P) Act. The allegation against him was that he was continuing to upload comments in favour of ULFA, a banned organization.
However, his counsel submitted that the petitioner is only a 24-year-old young boy, who did not know the implications of sharing posts on social media and since, he has already suffered custody for 57 days, he may be released on bail in any stringent condition.
On the other hand, the APP produced the case diary while opposing his prayer for bail. It was submitted that the investigation carried out so far implicates the petitioner of sharing comments in favour of the banned organization on social media platforms like Facebook and thereby the petitioner was propagating the ideology of the said banned organization and was writing in support of the said organization.
Consequently, opining that there was no material by virtue of which the Court can arrive at a prima facie finding that on perusal of the case diary, it can be believed that the acquisition against the petitioner is untrue, the Court denied him bail.
In related news, the Gauhati High Court last month granted bail to a college student (Borshahsri Buragohain/Borshahari Buragohain) who has been accused of writing a Facebook post allegedly supporting a banned terrorist organization United Liberation Front of Asom-Independent (ULFA-I).
The bench of Justice Ajit Borthakur granted her bail by observing that further continuation of her detention may not be required in the interest of the ongoing investigation. She was in judicial custody since May 18, 2022, i.e., for 64 days and was booked u/s 10(a)(iv)/13(1)(b) of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967.
Case title - Abhijit Gogoi vs The State Of Assam [Bail Appln./1605/2022]