Aishwarya Rathore

Published on August 24, 2021, at 14:33 IST

Eight accused in the Elgar Parishad Case moved to the Bombay High Court on Monday seeking default bail, claiming that the Special Court which remanded them to custody had no jurisdiction to do so.

The Elgar Parishad Case stems from inflammatory statements made at a conclave in Pune on December 31, 2017, which, triggered violence the next day near the Koregaon-Bhima War Memorial located in Maharashtra’s outskirts.

On September 5, 2019, the Division Bench of Justice SS Shinde and Justice NJ Jamadar was hearing a petition filed against the Lower Court’s rejection of Elgar Parishad’s default bail application.

The counsel for the petitioners, Senior Advocate Sudeep Pasbola, informed the High Court that since all the accused persons in the case were charged with scheduled offences under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) besides sections of the Indian Penal Code, only a designated Special Court could have taken cognizance of the case.

The counsel for petitioners informed the Bench that when the accused petitioners were first brought before the Pune Court for remand following their arrests in June 2018, they objected to the Court’s jurisdiction. Despite this, the Session Court moved forward with hearing the matter.

Pasbola added that thereafter, the accused had filed various interlocutory applications and default bail pleas, which were all heard and considered by the Session Judge, while they were required to be decided by the National Investigation Agency (NIA).

Pasbola stated, “If the Court has no jurisdiction then the order in remand or even for custody are in nullity.”

The Court will hear the National Investigation Agency on the activists’ petition on August 25.


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