Anti-corruption campaigner Akhil Gogoi was granted bail on Tuesday in connection with a case of college vandalism. He was arrested on Friday, a day after the Gauhati High Court had quashed a detention order against him under the National Security Act.
The Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti leader – a vocal critic of the Bharatiya Janata Party-led Assam government – has been leading an agitation against the way the administration has handled the farming crisis in the state. Gogoi has also been fighting against the dams being built, the land mafia and corruption in public life.
The activist has been lodged in Dibrugarh Jail since September, when he was arrested on charges of sedition and spreading religious animosity. Later, he was charged in 12 cases under the National Security Act.
On Friday, Goalpara Police Chief Amitava Sinha told Scroll.in that Gogoi was charged with criminal conspiracy and under the Prevention of Damage to Public Property Act for an incident that took place a couple of months ago during a protest by the Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti’s student wing.
Sinha said the group was protesting the government’s decision to name 12 new colleges in Assam after Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh ideologue Deendayal Upadhyaya. But the president of the samiti, Bhasco De Saikia, said Gogoi was not present in Dudhnoi when the incident took place, and the initial complaint related to the episode neither mentions his name nor the samiti’s. Sinha alleged that Gogoi “was part of the conspiracy”.