In yet another verdict by the Supreme Court on a plea by historian Romila Thapar and others seeking the immediate release of five activists and seeking an independent probe has been rejected . While saying no to setting up an SIT , the Court was of the view that the accused are at liberty to pursue other appropriate remedies.
“The accused persons do not have a say in which investgating agency should probe the case,” the concurring judgement said. The interim order passed by the court for house arrest shall continue for four more weeks. Justice Khanwilkar said this is not a case of arrest merely because of dissent or difference in political views.
Justice AM Khanwilkar and CJI Dipak Misra delivered a concurring judgment. Justice Chandrachud was the of the dissenting view in this case.
Instead , the SC ruled that the five activists –Varavara Rao, Arun Ferreira, Vernon Gonsalves, Sudha Bharadwaj and Gautam Navlakha — who are under house arrest since August 29 will remain so for another four weeks .
The Maharashtra police had arrested them on August 28 in connection with an FIR lodged following a conclave — ‘Elgaar Parishad’ — held on December 31 last year that had later triggered violence at Koregaon-Bhima village in the state.
Moreover, A bench headed by Chief Justice Dipak Misra had reserved the judgment on September 20 after counsel for both parties, including senior advocates Abhishek Manu Singhvi, Harish Salve and Additional Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, concluded their submissions.
The bench, that also comprised Justices A M Khaniwlkar and D Y Chandrachud, had asked the Maharashtra police to file their case diary pertaining to the ongoing investigation in the case.