Maoist Links Case: Bombay HC Acquits GN Saibaba

GN Saibaba

The appeal of five other convicts in the case was allowed by the bench and the court acquitted them too in the case

Mumbai: The Nagpur Bench of Bombay High Court acquitted former Delhi University professor Gokarakonda Naga Saibaba in an alleged Maoist links case on October 14. Court also ordered his immediate release from jail.

The appeal brought by GN Saibaba, who was found guilty and given a life sentence in 2017, was accepted by a split bench of Justice Rohit Deo and Anil Pansare.

GN Saibaba is wheelchair-bound due to a physical disability. Currently, he is lodged in Nagpur Central Prison.

The appeal of five other convicts in the case was also allowed by the bench. They too have been acquitted. One of the five passed away.

The bench directed, “Convicts should be released forthwith from jail unless they are accused in any other case.”

In 2013, GN Saibaba was arrested in Delhi. The charge against him was that Saibaba attended a summit of the Revolutionary Democratic Front in 2012, which is a Maoist front group that is outlawed in Odisha and Andhra Pradesh.

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While the case was being heard by the lower court in 2017, the public prosecutor had said “Saibaba was the deputy joint secretary and there is a speech of him in which he said, “Naxalism is the only way and denounces the democratic government setup. All these videos were played out in the court.”

The prosecutor had claimed that Saibaba was in contact with Maoists from various countries like Nepal and Sri Lanka.

A sessions court in Maharashtra’s Gadchiroli district convicted Saibaba and others in March 2017 for alleged Maoist affiliations and engaging in actions that amounted to waging war against the nation. Other defendants included a journalist and a student at Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU).

Under various provisions of the stringent Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) and the Indian Penal Code (IPC), the court held GN Saibaba and the others guilty.

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