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Bhima-Koregaon violence: Supreme Court rejects Milind Ekbote's anticipatory bail plea; detained by Pune police

The Supreme Court on Wednesday rejected the anticipatory bail plea of Hindu Ekta Aghadi leader Milind Ekbote, one of the accused in the Bhima-Koregaon violence case. Ekbote was detained by the Pune Rural Police from his residence in Pune following the dismissal of his plea by the court.

According to a DNA report, Ekbote had approached the Supreme Court after his anticipatory bail plea was rejected by a local court as well as by the Bombay High Court. He was granted interim relief from arrest till 14 March by the apex court.

Protests following Bhima-Koregaon violence. 101 reporters

File image of protests following Bhima-Koregaon violence. 101 reporters

On Tuesday, responding to allegations that the Maharashtra government was not doing enough to arrest Ekbote, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis had said in the Maharashtra Council that Ekbote had been given conditional bail by the Supreme Court.

"Also, we have contacted the Attorney General of India in Ekbote’s case. We have asked the Supreme Court for his custodial interrogation, and we will keep demanding that. There is no reason to believe that we want to spare anyone," said Fadnavis.

The police submitted before the apex court that they needed to take Ekbote into custody as he was not cooperating in the investigation.

One person was killed and several others injured in the violence which erupted on 1 January, after right-wing outfits opposed the 200th-anniversary celebration of the Bhima-Koregaon battle, in which forces of the East India Company defeated Peshwa's army.

Dalit leaders celebrate the British victory, as it is believed that soldiers from the Mahar community — then considered untouchable — were part of the East India Company's forces. This had led to widespread Dalit protests across the state.

Police had later booked Hindu Ekta Aghadi leader Milind Ekbote and another pro-Hindutva leader, Sambhaji Bhide, at the Pune rural police station for allegedly inciting the anti-Dalit violence.

With inputs from agencies.

Updated Date: Mar 14, 2018 14:01 PM

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