DELHI UNIVERSITY associate professor, Hany Babu MT, arrested on Tuesday as an accused in the Elgaar Parishad case, has been sent to the custody of the National Investigation Agency (NIA) for seven days by a special court in Mumbai on Wednesday.
The NIA through special public prosecutor Prakash Shetty sought Babu’s custody for ten days claiming that the central agency wants to question him in the case based on the letters recovered from seized electronic items during the investigation. The NIA also claimed that Babu was a ‘supporter of Naxal activities and Naxalite movements’. It alleged that a document was found which elaborates on his association with the banned CPI (Maoist). His custody was sought stating that it was necessary to confront the various facts revealed during the investigation of the other accused. So far, 11 others have been arrested in the case including Dr Anand Teltumbde and Gautam Navlakha, who were arrested by the NIA in April after it took over the probe from the Pune police earlier this year.
Babu’s lawyer R Sathyanarayanan opposed the remand plea stating that NIA has been interrogating him since the past four days after he presented himself before the agency after being summoned and hence further custodial interrogation was not required. Special Judge A T Wankhede granted the NIA seven day custody of Babu — till August 4 — considering the ‘nature of the allegations’ against him.
Babu’s wife Jenny Rowena, who teaches at Delhi University’s Miranda House, had told The Indian Express on Tuesday that his arrest was a ‘joke and a farce’. While the Pune police had claimed that a letter was recovered from arrested accused Rona Wilson during his arrest in June 2018, which allegedly makes a mention of a “Comrade H.B”, in connection with the “solidarity movement in support of Comrade Sai (GN Saibaba). The Pune Police had said that it was suspected that the person referred to was Babu. Both Rowena and Babu had spoken about a raid done at their home by the police in 2019 when they said that books, electronic equipment was seized and access to his social media accounts and passwords sought.
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