Ex-DU Prof GN Saibaba To Remain In Jail, Rules SC

New Delhi | Updated: 15 October, 2022 6:39 pm IST
File photo of former DU professor GN Saibaba.

The Supreme Court on Saturday stayed the Bombay High Court’s order which acquitted former Delhi University professor GN Saibaba of having links with Maoists.

On October 14, the high court acquitted Saibaba of charges pressed under the stringent Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.

Hearing a petition filed by the Maharashtra government against the high court order, a bench of Justices MR Shah and Bela M Trivedi, during a special sitting, sought responses from Saibaba and other accused in the case.

The bench also rejected the request of the 52-year-old wheelchair-bound academician to put him under house arrest due to his physical disability and deteriorating health conditions while listing the matter for further hearing on December 8.

The court observed that the Bombay High Court didn’t go into “all these aspects and passed the order based on sanction under UAPA”.

“The accused were convicted after detailed appreciation of evidence. Offences are very serious, which are against the interest of the society, sovereignty and integrity of India,” it said.

As per his family, Saibaba is suffering from multiple ailments.

Appearing on the behalf of the government, solicitor general Tushar Mehta said that house arrest cannot be an option. “There is a tendency of urban Naxals that seek house arrest, but everything can be done from home,” he remarked.

Mehta also pointed out that the Bombay High Court failed to consider the case on merits and strong evidence against them.

To this, Justice Shah reportedly said: “The brain is the most dangerous thing. For terrorists or Maoists, the brain is everything.”

In its October 14 order, the high court had set aside the life imprisonment awarded to Saibaba by a trial court. While passing the order, the court reportedly had said: “While the fight against terrorism was important, procedural safeguards cannot be sacrificed at the altar of perceived peril to national security”.

Saibaba was arrested in February 2014.

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