Activist and Elgar Parishad-
Koregaon Bhima case accused Anand Teltumbde has approached the Bombay High Court challenging the decision of a special court to give an extension of 90 days to the National Investigation Agency (NIA) to file its charge sheet against him.
His plea came up for hearing on Friday before a single bench presided over by Justice Revati Mohite-Dere, who recused herself from the hearing.
It is likely to now come up before another bench of HC next week.
In his plea, filed through advocate V Satyanarayan Rao, Teltumbde has challenged the special NIA court order of July 12 granting extension to NIA to file a charge sheet.
Teltumbde said, as on July 12, he had already been in judicial custody for 90 days.
In his plea, he said, as per law, there must be a compelling reason for granting such extension, and the prosecuting agency should have filed a report indicating it did make some progress in its probe in the 90 days.
The plea further said the special court should not have accepted the NIA's submission that it could not file the charge sheet due to the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown.
Even during the lockdown, lower courts had permitted physical filings and the NIA's investigating officer could have submitted the charge sheet before the in charge magistrate's court, the plea stated.
While the NIA is free to continue its probe even after the stipulated period of 90 days, it can't keep an accused in custody indefinitely without filing charge sheet, Teltumbde pointed out in his plea.
He further said the NIA had filed charge sheets in 10 cases even during lockdown between March 21 and July 12.
He said the special court's order granting extension to NIA should be quashed and set aside by HC, and he be released on bail.
(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)