Kochi: Kerala High Court Tuesday quashed a case against Swiss national Jonathan Baud, arrested for attending a function organised in memory of a Maoist activist at Valappad in Thrissur District on July 28 last, and cleared the decks for his return home.
Allowing a petition by 24-year old Baud, Justice P Ubaid held continuation of the case against him is a sheer abuse of legal process.
The court asked the concerned authorities to take immediate steps to facilitate for the petitioner’s travel to his nation.
The Judge said there was no condition in the visa (granted to Baud) prohibiting attending any meeting. Baud claimed that he had not committed any crime as alleged by police and he was innocent.
The case against him was registered alleging that he had violated conditions of visa. According to the petitioner, he was doing Masters level Economics course in University of Geneva and was interested in history and economics besides being an avid reader.
The petitioner contended that he was the only foreigner to have watched the meeting at Kodungallur.
The representatives, details of whom he was not aware of, enquired about his identity and he informed that he was on a visit to the country. This incident was ‘twisted’ by the investigating authority leading to the registration of crime under Sec 14 (b) of the Foreigners Act, he stated.
According to Police, Baud, who arrived in Kerala on a tourist visa, attended the meeting organised in memory of Sinoj, a Maoist activist from the state who was killed while making country bombs in Andhra Pradesh-Karnataka border.