Monday, Oct 20, 2014

‘Prominent persons from Pune were in contact with Saibaba’

Father of Santosh Shelar (20), who is suspected to have joined Maoists, shows his photograph. (Express photo by Arul Horizon) Father of Santosh Shelar (20), who is suspected to have joined Maoists, shows his photograph. (Express photo by Arul Horizon)
Express News Service | Pune | Posted: May 28, 2014 2:35 am

Investigation has revealed that Delhi University Professor G N Saibaba, who was arrested by the Gadchiroli police for his alleged links with Maoists, was the guiding force behind several movements of the “urban Maoist fronts” across the country. He was allegedly in contact with some “prominent persons” in Pune.

During an interaction with the media, organised by the Pune Union of Working Journalists on Tuesday, Special IGP (Nagpur range) Ravindra Kadam said: “Saibaba was in contact with some prominent persons and organisations in Pune. We cannot name them as investigation is on. It is being probed whether their communication with Saibaba was merely for sharing of knowledge and information or something more.”

Saibaba, the wheelchair-bound professor, taught English at Ram Lal Anand College. According to the police, he is deputy secretary of the Revolutionary Democratic Front, an outfit which is apparently banned in Andhra Pradesh.

Following the arrest of journalist and activist Prashant Rahi, the Gadchiroli police had searched Saibaba’s house in Delhi in September 2013. Rahi’s name had cropped up after JNU student Hem Mishra’s arrest for suspected Maoist links.

The police had then seized five hard discs and other items from Saibaba’s house, from which about 7 TB data was recovered. The police claimed to have got crucial information about his alleged activities, internationally spread network and links with Maoists. Saibaba was picked up from Delhi University on May 9.

Kadam said: “We arrested Saibaba after about nine months of investigation, based on strong evidence. He is among the top-level cadres of the party, which is not considered less than a professional revolutionary. His movements are restricted as he is wheelchair bound. But he managed to develop contacts at international level. From his contact lists, we have found some names from cities like Pune and Mumbai. Further investigation is on.”

Saibaba not a party member:  CPI-Maoists

Just two days after the police arrested the professor, the Communist Party of India (CPI-Maoists) had killed seven policemen in Gadchiroli district on May 11. Shrinivas, claiming to be the PRO of CPI (Maoists), had then told this reporter over phone that Saibaba was not a member of their party and that the attack had nothing to do his arrest.

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