Anand Teltumbde seeks discharge from Bhima Koregaon case, says no material to show he is linked to CPI (Maoist)

Regarding an allegation of the National Investigation Agency (NIA) that he is a member of the banned organization, he has pointed out that a witness cited by the NIA in its supplementary charge sheet had mentioned a book authored by him titled ‘Anti-Imperialism and Annihilation of Caste’.

Staff ReporterUpdated:Thursday, April 28, 2022, 11:53 PM IST
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Anand Teltumbde seeks discharge from Bhima Koregaon case, says no material to show he is linked to CPI (Maoist) | File Photo

Professor and Dalit scholar Anand Teltumbde accused in the Bhima-Koregaon case has sought a discharge from the case, stating in his plea that the investigating agency has not produced any material before the court to show that he is a member of the banned Communist Party of India (Maoist).

Regarding an allegation of the National Investigation Agency (NIA) that he is a member of the banned organization, he has pointed out that a witness cited by the NIA in its supplementary charge sheet had mentioned a book authored by him titled ‘Anti-Imperialism and Annihilation of Caste’. In the plea filed through advocate R. Sathyanarayan, Teltumbde has said that this itself on the face of it is a critique of Maoist ideology and is evidence that indicates that he is critical of the ideology. The allegation that is a member of the organization and furthering its agenda is “wholly untrue”, it said.

The NIA also alleges that he is an official member of the Committee for Protection of Democratic Rights (CPDR) and a member of the Anuradha Ghandy Memorial Committee (AGMC), both of which it alleges are frontal organizations of the CPI (Maoist). Teltumbde had contended that the NIA has not brought any material to show that these are indeed frontal organizations and said they have not been notified so. He said that while he was not actively participating in the activities of the AGMC, he was actively involved in inviting eminent speakers such as Arundhati Roy and Meena Kandasamy to deliver lectures.

The agency had also alleged that Teltumbde had attended international conferences under the guise of academic visits and used them to exchange material on Maoist ideology. It had further alleged that these materials were used for training by Teltumbde’s younger brother Milind Teltumbde, now deceased, who was a wanted Maoist leader, to expand the Maoist movement to urban areas. It also alleged Anand had received funds for the purpose of the Maoist agenda.

Teltumbde said regarding the allegations, that these are made based on a letter by one Prakash addressed to one “Comrade Anand”, which the NIA presumes to be him. Regarding the funds, he pointed out that there has been no probe if he had received those funds mentioned in the letter. He also pointed out that the letter was not recovered from him but from his co-accused Rona Wilson. Whether the letter reached him and whether the contents were implemented are not at all part of the investigation, he said. Sudhir Dhavale, also accused in the case, filed a discharge plea on Thursday and the NIA opposed the discharge application of accused Jyoti Jagtap. The court is expected to hear the pleas on May 4.

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