Bhima-Koregaon violence: Delhi HC ends house arrest of activist Gautam Navlakha

New Delhi: The Delhi high court on Monday allowed Gautam Navlakha, one of the five activists arrested in connection with the Bhima-Koregaon case, to be freed from house arrest.

On Friday, the Supreme Court extended the house arrest of Gautam Navlakha and four other activists to four more weeks, saying the accused can approach the appropriate forum within four weeks to seek further recourse.

The court said Navlakha’s detention has exceeded 24 hours, which was “untenable”.

The Maharashtra police had arrested the activists on August 28 in connection with an FIR lodged following a conclave — ‘Elgaar Parishad’ — held on December 31 last year that had allegedly triggered violence later at Koregaon-Bhima village in the state.

The five activists — Varavara Rao, Arun Ferreira, Vernon Gonsalves, Sudha Bharadwaj and Gautam Navlakha — were put under house arrest on August 29 following an apex court order on the plea by historian Romila Thapar, economists Prabhat Patnaik and Devaki Jain, sociology professor Satish Deshpande and human rights lawyer Maja Daruwala against the police action.

All the five activists were from their homes in different cities. Navlakha was arrested from his home in Delhi.

Gautam Navlakha is a civil liberties, democratic, and human rights activist; and a journalist. He is engaged in the activism by the People’s Union for Democratic Rights, Delhi.

Following the Delhi High Court ruling, Navlakha’s house arrest ends, while rest of the four activists are still under house arrest.

The high court also quashed the trial court’s transit remand order which he had challenged before the matter was taken to the apex court.