Supreme Court grants bail to activist Varavara Rao on medical grounds

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The Supreme Court Wednesday granted bail to activist Varavara Rao, an accused within the Bhima Koregaon case, on medical grounds, news organisation PTI reported.

While granting bail, a bench headed by Justice U U Lalit said he shall not misuse the freedom in any manner.

The 83-year-old, who has challenged the Bombay state supreme court order rejecting his petition for permanent medical bail, is currently on interim bail on medical grounds and was to surrender on July 12. The apex court had on July 12 extended Rao’s interim protection till further orders.

The case relates to alleged inflammatory speeches made at the Elgar Parishad conclave held in Pune on day, 2017, which the police claimed triggered violence the following day near the Koregaon-Bhima war memorial on the outskirts of the western Maharashtra city. The Pune police had also claimed that the conclave was organised by people with alleged Maoist links. The NIA later took over the probe into the matter.

Rao was arrested on August 28, 2018 from his Hyderabad residence and is an under-trial within the case. An FIR was lodged by the Pune Police on January 8, 2018 under various sections of the Indian legal code and also the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.