Mumbai: The National Investigation Agency (NIA) has arrested three members of Kabir Kala Manch -- a frontal organization of banned terrorist organization CPI (Maoist) -- in the Bhima Koregaon Elgar Parishad case, the agency said on Tuesday.
Sagar Tatyaram Gorkhe, 32, Ramesh Murlidhar Gaichor, 36, were arrested on Monday while Jyoti Raghoba Jagtap, 33, was nabbed on Tuesday under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act and other sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC). All the arrested persons are residents of Pune.
The case was filed in the Vishram Baug Police Station in Pune on April 4, 2018 regarding incitement of people and giving provocative speeches during the Elgar Parishad organized at Shaniwarwada, Pune by the activists of Kabir Kala Manch on December 31, 2017. The Elgar Parishad promoted enmity between various caste groups and led to violence resulting in loss of life and property and a statewide agitation in Maharashtra.
During investigation, it was found that senior leaders of the CPI (Maoist), an organisation banned under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, were in contact with the organizers of the Elgar Parishad as well as the accused arrested in the case to spread the ideology of Maoism and encourage unlawful activities, claims the agency.
The Pune Police filed a chargesheet and a supplementary chargesheet in this case on November 15, 2018 and February 21, 2019 respectively. The arrested Kabir Kala Manch persons -- Gorkhe, Gaichor and Jagtap -- are FIR named accused persons, the NIA said.
The NIA took up the investigation of the case on January 24 this year and arrested Professor Anand Teltumbde and Gautam Navlakha on April 14. Further, Delhi University Professor Hani Babu Musaliyavirtil Tarayil was arrested on July 28.
The NIA said that Gorkhe, Gaichor and Jagtap were propagating Maoist activities and ideology and were co-conspirators with the other arrested accused. The arrested persons were in contact with absconding accused Milind Teltumbde about the urban network of the CPI (Maoist), said the NIA.
"Also it is established that during their visits (of Kabir Kala Manch members) to the jungle, they underwent weapons and explosives training and awareness programmes on various topics related to the Maoist movement."
As per the evidence, the NIA said Milind Teltumbde discussed the Elgar Parishad programme in June 2018 which was organized at Pune and the subsequent inroads made by the CPI (Maoist) in the organization through members of the Kabir Kala Manch and other frontal organizations.
The arrested accused were produced before a special court at Mumbai earlier on Tuesday and were remanded to four-day NIA custody for interrogation.
On Monday, NIA had sent summons to Prof K. Satyanarayana of EFLU and to senior journalist KV Kurmanath, who are son-in-laws of Telugu poet Varavara Rao.
Prof. Partho Sarothi Ray of Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER) Kolkata was also summoned by NIA in Elgar Parishad case.
The arrested academicians alleged that arrests are nothing but harassment by the central agency to silence the dissents against the government's anti-democratic moves.