The Bombay High Court on Friday granted temporary bail to lawyer Surendra Gadling, an accused in the Elgar Parishad-Maoist links case, enabling him to perform certain rituals for his mother, who died last year.
Gadling, lodged at Taloja jail in Navi Mumbai, is expected to walk free between August 13 to 21, a division bench of Justices S.S. Shinde and N.J. Jamadar observed.
Earlier this year, the accused had moved the High Court through his lawyers R. Sathyanarayan and Senior Counsel Indira Jaising against a lower court’s denial of emergency bail to him to attend his mother’s funeral, when she died of Covid-19 in August 2020.
His lawyers told the HC last week that as most of his family members were either hospitalised or under home isolation then, the last rites and condolence meeting for his mother were yet to be performed. The family has decided to perform these rites on her first death anniversary on August 15, Jaising told the court, seeking temporary bail for him.
Gadling was asked to submit his passport before the special National Investigation Agency court and also his “whole itinerary” for the period of bail. The HC also directed Gadling to furnish two sureties for Rs 50,000 each.
He will have to attend the local police station at 10 am on August 16 and 19. He cannot leave Nagpur city except for immersing his mother’s ashes in Bina river on August 19, the Judges said.
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Gadling was arrested on June 6, 2018 in the case and has remained in prison since, awaiting trial. Many other activists have been arrested in the case, including Sudha Bharadwaj, Varavara Rao, Gautam Navlakha, Vernon Gonsalves, Arun Ferreira, Anand Teltumbde and Hany babu, Shoma Sen, Rona Wilson and Father Stan Swamy, a Roman Catholic priest and tribal rights activist, and also the oldest person to be accused of terrorism in India. Father Swamy died in custody on July 5 while the Bombay High Court was hearing his plea for bail which had been opposed to by the NIA.