National Investigation Agency.

A Special Court in Mumbai has asked the National Investigation Agency (NIA) probing the Elgar Parishad case to submit draft charges against the accused on August 9.

The draft charges will be filed by the NIA against all the accused in the case before Special Judge Dinesh E Kothalikar.

One of the accused in the case, Gautam Navlakha, has filed a plea before the court seeking to defer the submission of draft charges till he is given the cloned copy of the electronic devices seized by investigating officers from him.

The judge directed Navlakha to make his submissions after the draft charges are presented before the court by NIA.

After the draft charges are filed before the court, the prosecution will tell the court about the various charges and the prima facie case against the accused.

The defense can argue against them and the trial will begin.

Meanwhile, NIA filed a reply to the bail pleas of Professor Anand Teltumbde, activists Gautam Navlakha and Vernon Gonsalves.

The agency opposed the bail plea stating that the offences against the accused are of serious nature.

The three accused had filed the bail applications stating that they are above 60 years and belong to the vulnerable age group in the wake of the Covid-19 outbreak.

The NIA court has also directed Taloja jail to check up on the health condition of Anand Teltumbde.

The court directed jail authorities to take Anand Teltumbde for medical tests if the jail doctors deem fit and a report to be submitted to the court.

Two more accused in the case, Sagar Gorkhe and Ramesh Gaichor have also filed bail applications.

The NIA has been directed by the court to file a reply to their bail pleas too.

While Gonsalves was arrested in 2018, Teltumbde and Navlakha have been behind bars since 2020.

 The three, including 10 others, in the Elgar Parishad case, have been arrested on charges of anti-national activities while associating with banned organisations like the Communist Party of India (Maoists).

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