Pune:

Investigating officer ACP Shivaji Pawar on Thursday filed a written say in the court of special UAPA judge Kishor D Vadane opposing temporary bail to activistwriter-poet P Varavara Rao considering the serious charges against him in the Elgar Parishad case and security reasons.

Rao had recently moved a plea that he may be given a temporary bail or escorted by the police to Hyderabad for attending the post-death rituals of a relative from April 29 to May 4.

District government pleader Ujjwala Pawar made an oral submission to the effect that Rao’s plea cannot be granted in view of the serious charges against him and the problems the police faced at the time of his arrest in Hyderabad on August 28, 2018.

A large number of his supporters had gathered at the time to pose a law and order situation.

The court then asked the prosecutor to furnish a written say on the matter by Friday and said it would hear and pass an order on the same. The court also adjourned to May 7 the hearing of the bail pleas of Rao, Surendra Gadling, Rona Wilson, Mahesh Raut and

Sudhir Dhawale and other accused arrested for their alleged links with the banned CPI (Maoist).

It is the police’s case that Elgar Parishad organized on December 31, 2017, in Pune was supported and funded by the Maoists as a part of a larger conspiracy to create social unrest, chaos and overthrow government. Alleged inflammatory speeches at the Parishad contributed to the January 1, 2018, caste clashes at Koregaon Bhima, about 30km from the city, on Ahmednagar road.

Rao (78) stands accused of being a key negotiator for procurement of arms and ammunition from suppliers in Nepal and Manipur to further the unlawful activities of the banned outfit. The police also described him as an active member of the CPI (Maoist).

Investigating officer Pawar later told TOI, “Rao’s sister-in-law passed away on April 22. Rao has sought a four-day temporary bail or a visit under escort to Hyderabad to attend the 10th and 12th day rituals. We have mentioned in our say that he should not be granted the relief considering the nature of charges against him, security reasons and the fact that the rituals can be performed by the other family members.”

Parth Shah, one of the lawyers representing the veteran activist, said, “Rao is the only surviving elder man in the family and his presence for the post-death rituals is needed there.”