Supreme Court extends house arrest of five ‘Urban Naxals’ till September 19

The Supreme Court today extended the house arrest of the five ‘Urban Naxals’ till September 19, who were arrested in connection with the plot to kill the Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Bhima Koregaon violence. The apex court will also hear a plea filed by Romila Thapar and four others on the same day.

According to the reports, the central government had objected to the decision of the top court to entertain the petition filed against the arrests of five ‘Urban Naxals’ for their alleged links with left-wing terrorists. The Centre said the lower courts should have been approached first against the arrests of the five activists rather than the filing petition in the country’s top court.

The apex court will take up the plea for the final hearing on Wednesday and it observed that every criminal case is based on allegations, adding that it wanted to see whether there was any credibility in the case. Reportedly, the Central government will also produce the case diary and other evidence related to the case on that day.

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“We have to see police documents. We may cancel the case here if there’s nothing. If it calls for our interference, we will look into it,” a bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud said.

Maninder Singh, appearing for the central government, told the Supreme Court that the “menace of Naxalites and Maoists was increasing day by day” and said that the accused activists were behind the “increasing threat of anti-social activities”.

Additional Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for the Maharashtra government, challenged the petition filed by historian Romila Thapar and four others, saying that the petitioners are neither related to the case nor they have any idea about it.

Reacting to the centre’s petition, Abhishek Manu Singhvi, appearing for the petitioners, claimed that none of the accused was present in the ‘Elgaar Parishad’ event and none of them was named in the FIR lodged in the Bhima Koregaon violence case. Singhvi asked the top court to set up a Special Investigation Team (SIT) or a court-monitored investigation team to look into the allegations.

In a nationwide crackdown, the Pune police had arrested ten ‘Urban Naxals’ who are alleged to be a part of a sinister plot to kill the Prime Minister Narendra Modi in retaliation to the massive success achieved by the government in ending the left-wing terrorism in the country. The raids  were conducted in the residence of activist P Varavara Rao in Hyderabad, ‘human rights activist’ and ‘journalist’ Gautam Navlakha in Delhi, ‘activists Vernon Gonzalves and Arun Pereira in Mumbai, ‘civil rights’ lawyer Sudha Bhardwaj in Delhi, civil rights ‘activist’ Anand Teltumbde in Goa and ‘activist’ Stan Swamy in Ranchi.

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