The Supreme Court on Friday adjourned the hearing of the Maharashtra government’s plea against the Bombay High Court order declining to give an extension to the state police to conclude the investigation in the Bhima Koregaon case, PTI reported. The top court will hear the matter next on December 3.
Five activists were arrested on June 6 under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, which requires a chargesheet to be filed within 90 days of arrest. A special court in Pune granted the police 90 more days two days before the deadline was to expire. The Bombay High Court quashed the order on October 24, prompting the Maharashtra government to move the Supreme Court, which stayed the High Court’s order and granted police time until December 1 to file a chargesheet.
On Thursday, the Pune Police filed the chargesheet, accusing activist Rona Wilson of plotting to kill the prime minister. Activists Sudhir Dhawale and Mahesh Raut, Nagpur-based lawyer Surendra Gadling and professor Shoma Sen were also named in the chargesheet. The police had earlier claimed the activists were involved in the Elgar Parishad event in Pune that was followed by the caste-related violence in Bhima Koregaon on January 1 this year.
On Friday, a bench comprising Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, and Justices SK Kaul and KM Joseph said they were giving the state government’s counsel time to submit a rejoinder affidavit in the case.
On August 28, the police had arrested five more activists – Sudha Bharadwaj, Varavara Rao, Vernon Gonsalves, Arun Ferreira and Gautam Navlakha – on similar allegations.