Three more arrested by NIA in connection with Elgar Parishad case

Three more arrested by NIA in connection with Elgar Parishad case

Sagar Gorkhe and Ramesh Gaichor were arrested on Monday while Jyoti Jagtap was arrested on Tuesday.

The National Investigation Agency on Tuesday issued a statement that it had arrested three more people in connection with the Bhima Koregaon Elgar Parishad case. This takes the number of activists arrested in the case to 15. Sagar Tatyaram Gorkhe, 32, and Ramesh Murlidhar Gaichor, 36, were arrested on Monday while Jyoti Raghoba Jagtap, 33, was arrested on Tuesday, the NIA statement said. They all are residents of Pune.

The accused are members of Kabir Kala Manch, a frontal organisation of the banned terrorist organisation CPI(Maoist), the statement added.

The case relates to an Elgar Parishad event of December 31, 2017, organised by the Kabir Kala Manch at Shaniwarwada in Pune, where alleged provocative speeches were made, promoting enmity between various caste groups and leading to violence resulting in the loss of life and property and a statewide agitation in Maharashtra, the official said. 

During investigation, it was revealed that senior leaders of the CPI(Maoist), a banned organisation under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, were in contact with the organisers of Elgar Parishad as well as the accused arrested in the case to spread the ideology of Maoism/Naxalism and encourage unlawful activities, the official of the central investigation agency said.

The Pune police filed a charge sheet and a supplementary charge sheet in the case on November 15, 2018 and February 21, 2019 respectively. Gorkhe, Gaichor and Jagtap were named in the FIR.

The NIA took up the investigation of the case on January 24 this year and arrested Anand Teltumbde and Gautam Navlakha on April 14, the statement said.  Further, Hanybabu Musaliyavirtil Tarayil, 54, a resident of Gautam Buddha Nagar in Uttar Pradesh and an associate professor in the Department of English, Delhi University, was arrested on July 28. 

The NIA official said Gorkhe, Gaichor and Jagtap were ‘propagating Naxal activities and Maoist ideology’ and were co-conspirators with other arrested accused. They were in contact with absconding accused Milind Teltumbde about the urban network of the CPI(Maoist), the NIA has said

During the visits of the Kabir Kala Manch members to the jungle, they underwent weapon and explosive training, and awareness programmes on various topics related to the Maoist movement, the official said.

In June, 2018, Teltumbde discussed with them the Elgar Parishad Programme which was organised at Pune and the subsequent in-roads made by the CPI(Maoist) in the organisation and execution through the members of Kabir Kala Manch and other frontal organisations, the NIA official said.

The three arrested accused were produced before a special NIA court in Mumbai which sent them to four days of NIA custody, till September 11. Further investigation was underway, NIA said.

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