A sessions court on Friday granted bail to advocate Gunratan Sadavarte and over 110 protesting workers of the MSRTC arrested for a protest that turned violent outside NCP chief Sharad Pawar’s residence on Apr 8. The advocate was arrested for instigating workers, though was not at the protest site.
The advocate will have to furnish a bond of Rs. 50,000, while other detained workers, that of Rs. 10,000 each, as per the court's order.
Sadavarte was arrested on Apr 8 and has since been in custody. His advocate Girish Kulkarni had sought bail for him on the grounds that at a meeting the previous day of protest, Sadavarte had asked workers to gather on Apr 12 and so he cannot be held responsible for the protest that took place on Apr 8, for which he was booked. It was also contended that no one was hurt in the incident and that the protestors were proceeding peacefully, till they were attempted to be stopped and some resistance took place.
The prosecution had strongly opposed his bail application and told the court that he had amassed huge amounts from poor MSRTC workers and material collected by the police, showing a collection of Rs. 2 crores. The police’s reply opposing the relief also said that Sadavarte wanted to increase his political clout and hence intended to stretch the protests long. In a meeting that took place on Apr 7, the prosecution claimed he had planned morchas and protests outside residences and offices of prominent political leaders and the bid had foiled due to the Bombay HC’s ruling the previous day in which it extended the deadline for striking workers to join work, without having to fear administrative action, due to which there were not sufficient protestors.