SC: No to NIA’s plea for recall order in Navlakha case

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New Delhi: Supreme Court in its order Friday refused to entertain NIA’s plea for recall of its order to keep UAPA accused Gautam Navlakha, allegedly associated with banned Maoist organisation, under house-arrest.

The Supreme Court in its order said there was no discrepancy in the staying of the accused, Navlakha, at a place owned by CPI, a recognised political party.

A bench of the Supreme Court, headed by Justice K M Joseph and also Justice Hrishikesh Roy passed the order after hearing an appeal filed by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) seeking a direction to recall its order of house arrest of Elgar Parishad accused Gautam Navalkha.

On NIA opposing the order, the bench said, “You are unable to keep an eye on 70 year old man, the Solicitor General (SG) and Additional Solicitor Generals (ASG) saying that we can’t get a 70 year old man in confinement? With all might of the state you cannot keep 70 year old ailing man. we’re getting this perception. It is strange.”

In addition to restrictions placed earlier, on Navlakha, the bench also allowed the NIA to seal kitchen door leading to exit point & also lock the grill. It has asked to give effect to house arrest order within 24 hours.

“We make it clear that Nov 10 order will be given to effect within 24 hours from the date if receipt of order,” the bench of the Top Court, said, in its order Friday.

In its interim order passed on November 10, the division bench of the Supreme Court, headed by Justice Joseph and Justice Roy, allowed the plea filed by activist, Gautam Navlakha, for keeping him in house arrest, after keeping in view his “ill health”, and “age”, for a month. Despite its orders, this was not complied with.

The Supreme Court in its earlier interim order had on November 10, had said Navlakha, arrested in the alleged Bhima Koregaon case, would be shifted from Taloja jail for one month and be kept in “house arrest,” after keeping in view his age and health condition.

The Apex Court also had asked the NIA to evaluate the premises where he will be placed within 48 hours from the date of the order, ie, from November 10.

It also had asked Navlakha, not to use any mobile phone, internet, laptop or any other communicating device. It, however, permitted him to use mobile phone provided by the police for 10 minutes in a day only and that too in the presence of police personnel.

The Supreme Court also had said only his sister and daughter can visit him once in week for three hours.

Navlakha had moved the Supreme Court seeking its direction for being kept under house arrest, as he pleaded that his health condition is deteriorating and his age is 65 and he is not keeping up well.

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