Thursday, Jun 20, 2024 | Last Update : 04:30 AM IST

  Metros   Mumbai  07 Sep 2019  ‘Letters considered proof against Sudha unauthentic’

‘Letters considered proof against Sudha unauthentic’

THE ASIAN AGE.
Published : Sep 7, 2019, 3:20 am IST
Updated : Sep 7, 2019, 3:20 am IST

Others arrested in the case included activists and academics Vernon Gonsalves, Arun Ferreira and Shoma Sen.

Sudha Bharadwaj
 Sudha Bharadwaj

Mumbai: The counsel of Bhima-Koregaon violence accused Sudha Bharadwaj Friday argued that the six letters — being considered as proof against her – were unauthentic and false. He argued that even during the British reign, revolutionaries were booked for criminal conspiracy when their names appeared in recruitment lists but the courts refuted such evidence.

A single bench of Justice Sarang Kotwal was hearing the bail application filed by Vernon Gonsalves and Sudha Bharadwaj. Her counsel Yug Chowdhary argued that the letters had no evidentiary value as they were not written and signed by Ms Bharadwaj or found from her possession. He told the court that even during the British Raj, courts refused to accept such evidence.

Advocate Chowdhary argued that while the prosecution claimed that the letters had been sent via human courier, there were no statements of the courier to support these claims. He argued that since one year, Ms Bharadwaj had been in jail and there were no antecedents against her. There were no chances of tampering with the evidence as all the evidence was with the police. He also argued that she could not be denied bail on grounds that she would threaten witnesses.

Referring to the Pune police’s accusation that Ms Bharadwaj had constituted an “anti-fascist front” along with her co-accused and that through this front, she and the others planned to “topple the democratically elected government, assassinate political figures, and threaten the unity, integrity, and sovereignty of India” advocate Chowdhary said that none of the six letters even suggested any such conspiracy. “Besides, last I heard, fascism is a very bad thing. To be anti-fascist, I should hope, should be a duty for all of us,” he said.

Ms Bharadwaj was arrested by the Pune police and booked under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act in September last year, in connection with an event to commemorate the Battle of Bhima-Koregaon on December 31, 2017. Others arrested in the case included activists and academics Vernon Gonsalves, Arun Ferreira and Shoma Sen.

Tags: sudha bharadwaj