The Gauhati High Court on Monday admitted Assam activist Akhil Gogoi’s petition against the National Investigation Agency’s rejection of his bail in a case related to protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act, reported PTI. The court directed the agency to produce the case records on October 13.
Gogoi was arrested for his alleged role in instances of violence during the protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act in Assam last year. In August, an NIA court in Guwahati had rejected his bail application. Gogoi had then approached the High Court.
A bench comprised of Justices Kalyan Rai Surana and Ajit Borthakur heard the case on Monday. Rahul Shensua, a member of Gogoi’s legal team, told news channel Time8 that the investigation agency sought more time to file an objection. “NIA asked for four weeks of time to file an objection; however, the division bench rejected NIA’s plea and directed to file the objection within October 13,” he said.
On July 17, the Gauhati High Court had granted Gogoi bail in three cases in connection with the CAA protests. The cases are related to the burning of a circle office, a post office and a United Bank of India branch in Dibrugarh district during the protests in December. However, the founder of the Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti has been accused of sedition in two cases.
Gogoi had tested positive for Covid-19 on July 11 and was given treatment at the Gauhati Medical College and Hospital.
The NIA is investigating two cases, which were filed at Chandmari and Chabua police stations initially, related to the alleged role of Gogoi and three of his colleagues in the violent protests, according to PTI.
A special NIA court granted him bail on March 17 after the investigating agency failed to file a chargesheet against him within the specified period of 90 days. However, he was arrested again, just two days later.
The activist was jailed for leading a protest against the Citizenship Amendment Act outside the Jorhat deputy commissioner’s office on December 12. The NIA had said that Gogoi was booked for “waging a war against the nation”, conspiracy and rioting.
Three days later, the NIA booked the anti-corruption and Right to Information activist under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act, which empowers the government to designate an individual as a “terrorist” if he or she is found to be committing, preparing for, promoting, or being involved in an act of terrorism.