The Gauhati High Court on Monday upheld the order of the special National Investigation Agency (NIA) court and granted bail to peasants’ leader Akhil Gogoi in connection with a case related to inciting violence during the anti-Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) agitation in Assam in 2019.
A division bench of Justices Suman Shyam and Mir Alfaz Ali disposed of an appeal filed by the NIA, challenging the special court’s order granting bail to Gogoi.
The HC bench held that merely causing civil disturbance, without the element of intention to cause ‘terrorist act’ would not fall within the ambit of unlawful activity under section 2(1)(o) of the UAPA Act.
A NIA special court in Guwahati in October last year had granted bail to Gogoi in connection with the case lodged initially at Chabua police station in Dibrugarh district.
The high court made it clear that to attract the offences punishable under the Unlawful Assemblies (Prevention) Act, 1967— the act complained of must be a “terrorist act” committed with the intention to threaten the integrity, sovereignty of India, etc.
Gogoi’s counsel Santanu Borthakur said that the high court dismissing the prayer of the State has upheld the lower court’s order of granting bail to Gogoi.
But the leader of peasants’ leader, who was arrested in December in 2019 on charges of violence during the anti-CAA stir, will remain in jail as he is yet to get bail in another NIA case lodged in Chandmari police station in Guwahati.
Both cases were subsequently transferred to the NIA.
Krishak Mukti Sangram Parishad (KMSS) and Raijor Dal leader Gogoi is lodged in the Guwahati central jail since his arrest in December 2019.