Nagpur/Pune: In a grotesque revelation, the Naxalites were planning on assassinating Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a Rajiv Gandhi like incident. A letter seized from one of the Naxal sympathisers arrested along with four others in Nagpur, Mumbai and Delhi revealed the plan.
A letter retrieved from the house of one of the five recently arrested activists recently for having links with the outlawed CPI (Maoist) speaks of Naxalites mulling over “another Rajiv Gandhi incident” as part of “concrete steps to end the Modi raj,” the Pune police submitted before the Sessions court in Pune.
Teams of the Pune police on Wednesday had arrested noted Dalit activist-publisher Sudhir Dhawale from Mumbai, prominent human rights lawyer Surendra Gadling, tribal activist Mahesh Raut and Nagpur University English Professor Shoma Sen from Nagpur, and activist Rona Wilson in New Delhi. The arrests were made for their alleged linkages with Naxalism, their role in organizing the ‘Elgaar Parishad’ and the subsequent Bhima-Koregaon violence which erupted on January 1 this year.
In their submission on Thursday, the police allegedly seized a letter from Wilson’s house in New Delhi in which ultras, among other things, talk about “the requirement of Rs 8 crore for an annual supply of M-4 carbines and four lakh rounds.” The letter also allegedly speaks about pulling off “another Rajiv Gandhi type incident” by “targeting Prime Minister Modi’s road shows”, special public prosecutor Ujjwala Pawar told the court.
“We are thinking along the lines of another Rajiv Gandhi incident. It sounds suicidal and there is a chance that we might fail but we feel that the party PB/ CC [Politburo/ Central Committee] must deliberate on our proposal,” Pawar quoted the letter as saying.
All five persons were produced before the Sessions court on Thursday which remanded them to police custody till June 14.
While seeking their remand, Pawar quoted from another letter allegedly seized from Mr.Wilson’s residence which ostensibly speaks of the “appreciation” of the top CPI (Maoist) brass for the “endearing efforts of all urban comrades.”
“Comrades Mangalu and Deepu have been coordinating the Koregaon programme (for) last two months with Comrade Sudhir,” said Ms. Pawar, quoting from another letter.
She further submitted that the letter showed that funds [for the Elgaar Parishad and other activities] were allegedly provided by the Maoists to “comrade Sudhir” for the Bhima-Koregaon “task” and “comrades Shoma and Surendra” were “authorised to provide funds for future programs.”
Letters fabricated, claim defence:
The defence counsel, in their arguments, said that the accused had been “framed” and that the documents submitted by the prosecution “fabricated by the authorities.”
“These [letters] are a vague submission. The veracity of their contents and authorship has yet to be proven,” said advocate Tosif Shaikh, one of the defence lawyers.
While stating that chances of fabrication and doctoring by the investigating authorities could not be ignored, Mr. Shaikh questioned the police’s motive behind producing the documents now.
“More than a month has passed after raids [in April] had been conducted in the residences of those arrested. At the time, laptops, electronic devices and other documents had been seized. So, if there was indeed something as shocking as the contents of the supposedly explosive letters show, why didn’t the police arrest the accused at the time and produce the letters forthwith?” he said.
A diversionary feint:
Alleging the police investigation to be “a diversionary feint” meant to distract attention from the real perpetrators of the Bhima-Koregaon riots, advocate Kumar Kalel said the police investigation was completely illogical.
“The Pune Rural police have themselves filed a case against Hindutva leader Milind Ekbote, accused for orchestrating the Bhima-Koregaon violence. Then, why no case has been registered against Ekbote under the UAPA Act…and Ekbote has already faced arrest under the Atrocities Act,” said Shaikh.