Bhima Koregaon: Court allows accused Surendra Gadling to use jail computer

Mumbai, Mar 16 (PTI) A special National Investigation Agency [NIA] court here on Wednesday allowed advocate Surendra Gadling, an accused in the Elgar Parishad-Maoist links case, to use the computer available in the prison where he is lodged, for an hour two days a week.

Gadling, arrested by the Pune police in June 2018, is currently lodged at the Taloja central prison in Navi Mumbai awaiting trial.

He had sought the court’s nod to use a laptop, saying he wants to prepare his defence.

However, special judge D.E. Kothalikar, presiding over the NIA court, granted him permission to use the jail’s computer two days a week for an hour.

Meanwhile, the court allowed a plea of another accused, lawyer-activist Sudha Bharadwaj who is currently on bail, to reside in Mumbai’s suburb of Oshiwara.

Bharadwaj, granted bail by the Bombay High Court in December 2021, was staying in the neighbouring Thane city post-release from jail and later requested the court to allow her to reside in Oshiwara with a friend.

The court also granted a petition of singer and activisit Jyoti Jagtap, a co-accused, to receive a set of books, namely ‘Cure for Procrastination’, ‘The Book of Overthinking – Stop the Cycle of Worry’ and ‘Atomic Habits’, in the prison.

Besides Gadling and the duo, several other activists and academicians have been named as accused in the case which relates to violence at Koregaon Bhima village in Pune district on January 1, 2018.

According to the Pune Police, “inflammatory” speeches and “provocative” statements made at the ‘Elgar Parishad’ conclave held in Pune on December 31, 2017, had triggered violence at Koregaon Bhima the next day. The police have alleged that the conclave was backed by Maoists.

The case was later taken over by the NIA.

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