A division bench of Justices B.P. Dharmadhikari and S.V. Kotwal dismissed the petition.
Mumbai: The Bombay high court Friday dismissed a petition filed by civil rights activist Anand Teltumbde, seeking quashing of a FIR lodged against him by the Pune police for his alleged role in the Bhima-Koregaon violence and his alleged Maoist links.
In his plea, Teltumbde denied all the charges against him even as the police opposed the same and claimed that it had ample evidence which implicated the activist in the case.
A division bench of Justices B.P. Dharmadh-ikari and S.V. Kotwal dismissed the petition. However, the court gra-nted Teltumbde interim protection from arrest for a period of three weeks, during which time, he can approach the Supreme Court.
Earlier, Teltumbde's lawyer, senior advocate Mihir Desai, told the bench that on December 30 and 31 last year, his client was in Goa and not in Pune or anywhere close to the site of the violence near Bhima-Koregaon.
Advocate Desai sought quashing of the FIR registered by the Pune pol-ice, naming the activist as a co-accused in the Elgar Parishad – Bhima-Koregaon case. However, additional government pleader Aruna Pai, who appeared for the Pune police, objected to Teltumbde’s plea saying that there was adequate incriminating evidence against the activist but he was yet to be arrested as the police was “busy” probing other accused.
During the Elgar Paris-had event held at Pune’s Shaniwarwada a day before January 1, 2017, there were caste clashes at Bhima-Koregaon located near Pune where several activists allegedly made inflammatory speeches and provocative statements that contributed to the violence, the police said.
Several activists were named in a FIR lodged on January 8. Some of the activists including Arun Ferreira, Vernon Gonsalves, Sudha Bhar-dwaj, P Varavara Rao and Gautam Navlakha were arrested by the police.