Elgar Parishad case: Supreme Court grants bail to Gautam Navlakha

Gautam Navlakha.
Gautam Navlakha. Photo: IANS

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Tuesday granted bail to activist Gautam Navlakha in the Elgar Parishad-Maoist links case.
A bench of Justices M M Sundresh and S V N Bhatti refused to extend the stay imposed by the Bombay High Court order on the bail granted to Navlakha in the case.

It also directed Navlakha to pay Rs 20 lakh towards expenses for security in house arrest. "We are inclined to not extend the stay as the high court order is detailed in granting bail. The trial would take years and years and years for completion. Without going at length into contentions, we will not extend the stay. A sum of Rs 20 lakh to be paid to the opposite party as earliest," the bench said.

The top court noted that Navlakha has been in jail for over four years and charges are yet to be framed in the case. The Bombay High Court had on December 19 last year granted bail to Navlakha but stayed its order for three weeks after the NIA sought time to file an appeal in the top court.

Navlakha, who was arrested in August 2018, was in November last year permitted by the Supreme Court to be placed under house arrest. He is currently residing in Navi Mumbai. 

The case relates to alleged inflammatory speeches made at the Elgar Parishad conclave held in Pune on December 31, 2017, which police claim triggered violence the next day near the Koregaon-Bhima war memorial on the outskirts of the western Maharashtra city. Sixteen activists have been arrested in the case and five of them are currently out on bail.

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