Anand Teltumbde
Anand Teltumbde

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday dismissed a plea filed by the National Investigation Agency challenging the bail granted by the Bombay High Court to writer Anand Teltumbde in the Bhima Koregaon case, Live Law reported.

A bench comprising Chief Justice of India (CJI) DY Chandrachud and Justice Hima Kohli however added that the High Court’s observations will not be treated as conclusive final findings at the trials.

In the bail order, the Bombay High Court bench of Justices AS Gadkari and Milind Jadhav had observed that offences under Sections 13 (unlawful activities), 16 (terrorist act) and 18 (conspiracy) of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act were not made out against Teltumbde.

Only offenses under Sections 38 (membership of terrorist organisation) and 39 (support given to terrorist organisation) of the law were made out, the bail order stated.

On November 18, the Bombay High Court had put a stay on Teltumbde’s bail order for a week as the NIA had asked for time to file an appeal in the Supreme Court.

Teltumbde was among the 16 persons arrested in the Bhima Koregaon case, which pertains to caste violence in a village near Pune in 2018. He was arrested in April 2020.

The NIA has claimed that Teltumbde was among the convenors of the Elgar Parishad held on December 31, 2017, which allegedly sparked the violence at Bhima Koregaon on the following day.

At Friday’s hearing, Justice Chandrachud asked the National Investigation Agency why Teltumbde had been charged under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, according to Live Law.

“What is the specific role to bring UAPA sections into action?” the chief justice asked.

 “The event you alleged is for Dalit mobilisation. Is Dalit mobilisation preparatory act to proscribed activity?”

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