Elgaar Parishad case: Cops get 90 days more for charge sheet
Families of all accused present at court on Monday; Varavara Rao's wife worried about his failing health
The families of those arrested for the Elgaar Parishad that triggered the Koregaon-Bhima violence in January this year had gathered outside the special court in Pune on Monday where the case is being heard.
"My husband is innocent and the Pune police have fabricated a case against him. He is 78 years old and has faced 25 cases since 1973. He has not been proven guilty in a single case. This time, too, he will be proved innocent," said Hemalata, 70, wife of Hyderabad-based poet and writer P Varavara Rao.
On Monday, Rao, Nagpur based lawyer Surendra Gadling, 48, lawyer, professor and human rights activist Sudha Bharadwaj, 57, from New Delhi; Arun Thomas Ferreira, 45, from Thane and Vernon Gonsalves, 61, from Andheri were produced in court for their bail hearing. All were produced before Special Judge Kishor Wadane and later sent back to Yerawada Central Prison.
Assistant Commissioner of Police Shivaji Pawar via Government District pleader Ujjwala Pawar had moved an application under relevant provisions of the Unlawful Activity Prevention Act (UAPA) for 90-day extension for investigations and filing charge sheets, which was granted on Monday.
The defence lawyers argued that the police had been giving the same grounds for custody extension but the investigations had not progressed an inch." On the court premises, all the accused were seen greeting each other and discussing their last meeting. Their families, too, were present. Gadling's wife Minal had come along with their children.
Ferreria's son, wife and mother had come, while Rao's wife Hemlata was accompanied by their granddaughter. Ferriera's son was heard discussing the court hearing and procedure with him, while Rao's wife asked after his health.
Gadling's wife, too, was heard telling him to take care of his health as he was looking pale. Rao's wife Hemalata said, "While the investigating officer claimed that they had collected a huge amount of data, only 13 letters have been released in which three letters mention my husband's name. We hope he is acquitted soon as his health is weak."
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