The Bombay High Court on Wednesday reserved orders in anticipatory bail applications filed by Gautam Navlakha and Anand Teltumbde.
Justice PD Naik noted that the interim protection from arrest granted to both the accused would continue until further orders. Pune police has alleged that journalist/activist Gautam Navlakha and scholar Anand Teltumbde had Maoist links and had a role to play in the caste-based violence that took place at Koregaon Bhima in Pune on January 1, 2018.
On Tuesday, Pune police had filed an application seeking appearance of both the accused during the hearing of their applications.
Special PP Aruna Pai submitted that two separate applications seeking the appearance of both the accused had been filed. When Justice Naik enquired as to why the applications were not filed earlier, before submissions were made, Aruna Pai stated the applications were filed after receiving due instructions and were maintainable as order was yet to be passed.
Dr.Yug Chaudhary appeared on behalf of Gautam Navlakha and Senior Advocate Mihir Desai for Anand Teltumbde.
Chaudhary had argued that there was no evidence presented to substantiate the allegations against Navlakha who had once acted as a mediator for the government with the maoists and Desai submitted that the so called 'frontal' organisations of CPI(Maoist) which Teltumbde was working with had not been banned by the State.
Prosecution argued that Navlakha was an active leader and Teltumbde an active member of the banned CPI(Maoist). Pune Police claimed that Navlakha was in touch with Kashmiri separatists and terrorist organisations. Regarding Teltumbde, police alleged he was working for frontal organisations of CPI(Maoist) organizations and indulged in creating an anti-government atmosphere amongst the public.
Since the Supreme Court refused to extend the interim protection from arrest granted to Navlakha earlier in October and asked him to seek relief before the Sessions Court, he approached the Sessions Court which rejected Navlakha's application noting that his custodial interrogation was necessary as the police had been trying to arrest him since 2018. Thereafter, Navlakha was granted protection from arrest.