Pune police raid 83-year-old activist's Ranchi home

Updated: Jun 13, 2019, 08:03 IST | Chaitraly Deshmukh

An eight-member team of the Pune city police led by Assistant Commissioner Shivaji Pawar raided the house of the tribal rights' activist

Pune police raid 83-year-old activist's Ranchi home
Clashes erupted at Koregaon Bhima on January 1, 2018

In the Elgaar Parishad case, Pune police on Wednesday raided the house and office of 83-year-old Father Stan Swamy in Ranchi and collected what they called digital evidence along with some books, documents and maps.

An eight-member team of the Pune city police led by Assistant Commissioner Shivaji Pawar raided the house of the tribal rights' activist. This was the second raid at his resident by Pune police, with the first one conducted on August 28, 2018. The Pune police have named 22 key people as accused in the case with Swamy's name mentioned in the communication between a few accused. Deputy Commissioner Police Suhas Bawche told mid-day that the raid was "based on some clues to procure digital evidence from him."

ACP Pawar said that Swamy had communicated with the suspects in prison. "We suspect that Swamy has links with the banned CPI (Maoist) organisation, which instigated the violence after the Elgaar Parishad in Pune." Swamy has moved a petition in the court in this regard. The Elgaar Parishad, which was organised to mark the 200th year of the Battle of Koregaon, saw activists of various Dalit organisations gathering at the Shaniwar Wada on December 31, 2017, followed by large-scale violence at Koregaon Bhima, near Pune.

A statement was issued by the Jharkhand Janadhikar Mahasabha condemning the raid. A volunteer told mid-day that Swamy has been "an advocate of innocent Adivasis imprisoned on false charges."

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