Mumbai News

Elgar Parishad case: Bombay HC rejects Jyoti Jagtap’s bail plea – Hindustan Times

The Bombay high court on Monday rejected Elgar Parishad–Bhima Koregaon violence accused Jyoti Jagtap’s bail plea, observing the National Investigation Agency (NIA) case against her seemed true. Jagtap moved the high court after a special court rejected her bail application in February.

A high court division bench of justices A S Gadkari and Milind Jadhav rejected Jagtap’s plea, citing the material against her.

NIA arrested Jagtap in September 2020. It claimed she was an active member of the banned CPI (Maoist) and was receiving instructions from Milind Teltumbde, an alleged Maoist insurgent leader who was killed in November 2021. A charge sheet was filed against her in October 2020 under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act.

Jagtap’s lawyers, Mihir Desai and Kritika Agarwal, told the bench their client was wrongly implicated. They cited discrepancies in the findings of Pune Police, which initially investigated the case, and the NIA while establishing Jagtap was among the organisers of the December 31, 2017, Elgar Parishad.

The lawyers said Pune Police said Sudhir Dhawale, another accused along with Kabir Kala Manch (KKM) members, organised the event. The lawyers said NIA claimed KKM members Ramesh Gaichor, Sagar Gorkhe, and Jagtap were the organisers.

The lawyers argued the NIA has put nothing on record to prove that Jagtap was a KKM member. They added even if she was, she cannot be blamed for the alleged instigating speeches delivered at the Parishad.

KKM has been named among the organisers of the Elgar Parishad a day before the violence in Bhima Koregaon near Pune on January 1, 2018.

The lawyers said the case was at the stage of framing of charges and trial would take a long time, and therefore Jagtap should be granted bail.

The NIA opposed the plea. Additional solicitor general Anil Singh and Sandesh Patil, who appeared for NIA, said Jagtap allegedly met Teltumbde in Maharashtra’s Korchi forest and underwent training for using weapons and handling explosives there.

The NIA argued Jagtap attended meetings of Elgar Parishad organisers, who allegedly tried to create hatred against the government among Dalits.

Singh cited NIA’s investigation and said it found Jagtap was one of the main conspirators and an active KKM member furthering the activities of CPI (Maoist) in urban areas on Teltumbde’s instructions.

The bench started hearing the appeal on September 13 and concluded it on October 4.