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Seized documents to be shared with Elgar Parishad accused, says Pune court

A special court in Pune on Friday issued an order to share cloned copies of the documents seized from the people accused in Elgar Parishad case during their arrest.

The order was issued by special judge KD Vadane a day after heated arguments ensued between the accused and the public prosecutor. While the order does not mention the date when the procedure should be carried out, the judge orally announced the date to be May 27.

“The judgment shows that the chargesheet filed in the case is incomplete and that the documents still need to be submitted,” said advocate Rohan Nahar, the defence lawyer.

Subsequently, an application seeking default bail under Section 167(2) of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) was filed by the defence lawyer on behalf of Sudhir Dhawale, Rona Wilson, Surendra Gadling, Shoma Sen and Mahesh Raut.

Two chargesheets were filed against the accused in the Elgar Parishad case for allegedly having connections with Maoists. The first chargesheet was filed on November 15, 2018 and the second on February 21, 2019. The accused have been lodged in Yerawada central jail for the past several months.

The procedure of handing over cloned copies of the documents should be carried out in the office of assistant superintendent of court, according to the order, in the presence of a forensic expert. However, the court has neither specified who the forensic expert will be nor has it put the onus of choosing one on anybody.

Shivaji Pawar, investigating officer (IO), assistant commissioner of police (ACP) of Swargate division; the accused and their respective advocates will be present during the handing over. The judge has also directed the assistant superintendent of court to record the procedure on video, produce a panchanama and submit a subsequent report in the matter.

The accused Surendra Gadling and Arun Ferreira, both lawyers by profession, submitted an application on May 12 under Section 207 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC) demanding cloned copies of the documents.

Ujjwala Pawar, Pune district government pleader, had refused to share the documents in her reply to the application which was submitted on Thursday.

Pawar said that if the documents are shared with the accused, they may pass it on to organisations that aim to “endanger the security, integrity, unity or sovereignty of India”. During several hearings, she has submitted to the court that the accused are working for the Communist Party of India (Maoist), a banned organisation.

First Published:
May 17, 2019 22:00 IST

Source: HindustanTimes