Koregaon-Bhima case: SC boost for Maharashtra Police, sets aside Bombay HC order refusing to extend deadline for filing of chargesheet

By: | Published: February 13, 2019 12:23 PM

Police are probing the alleged Maoist links in the January 1, 2018 violence which was triggered by provocative speeches made at the Elgar Parishad conclave in Pune on December 31, 2017.

koregaon bhima, koregaon bhima case, koregaon bhima battle, koregaon bhima pune, koregaon bhima koregaon, koregaon bhima riots, bhima koregaon, bhima koregaon case, bhima koregaon indian express, bhima koregaon anniversary, bhima koregaon battle, bhima koregaon historyThe arrested activists had been alleging that they were entitled for grant of default bail in the case as the Maharashtra police did not file the charge sheet within the stipulated 90 days period and moreover, the extension granted by the trial court was bad in law. (File/PTI)

The Supreme Court on Tuesday set aside the Bombay High Court order refusing to extend the time limit set for Maharashtra police to file a charge sheet in the Koregaon-Bhima violence case. Court said that arrested activists may seek regular bail as charge sheet has already been filed.

A bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi had earlier stayed the Bombay High Court order which had set aside the trial court decision to extend time by 90 days for filing the charge sheet in the case by the state police.

While setting aside the Bombay HC order refusing to grant 90 days extension to Maharashtra police for filing the charge sheet, the apex court, however, added that the five rights activists may now seek regular bail in the case as the police have already filed the charge sheet.

The main bone of contention was whether the application under Section 43D UAPA for extension of time to file chargesheet was filed by the competent authority. The Bombay HC found that the application was filed by the investigating officer, instead of the prosecutor, and held that it could not have been acted upon by the trial court.

Pune police under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act or UAPA had arrested Dalit activist Sudhir Dhawale, Surendra Gadling, Nagpur University professor Shoma Sen, Mahesh Raut and Kerala native Rona Wilson in June this year for their alleged links with Maoists.

The arrested activists had been alleging that they were entitled for grant of default bail in the case as the Maharashtra police did not file the charge sheet within the stipulated 90 days period and moreover, the extension granted by the trial court was bad in law.

Police are probing the alleged Maoist links in the January 1, 2018 violence which was triggered by provocative speeches made at the Elgar Parishad conclave in Pune on December 31, 2017.

The Vijay Stambh had been erected by the British as a memorial for the soldiers killed in the Koregaon Bhima battle on January 1, 1818. Dalits believe it as a victory over casteism as the British army comprised a large contingent of Dalit Mahar soldiers, who had defeated the forces of Peshwas who were the Brahmin custodians of the Maratha kingdom.

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