Ex-DU professor GN Saibaba acquitted in Maoist links case
Former Delhi University (DU) Professor GN Saibaba along with five other accused was acquitted by the Nagpur bench of the Bombay High Court in the case of alleged links to the banned party Communist Party of India (Maoist). Arrested in May 2014, Saibaba is wheelchair-bound with 90% disability. The division bench ordered that he be released immediately from Nagpur Central Jail.
Why does this story matter?
- A sessions court in Gadchiroli, Maharashtra convicted Saibaba for alleged Maoist links along with a journalist and a student of Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) in March 2017.
- In August 2013, two close associates of Saibaba were held and were found in possession of incriminating CPI (Maoist) documents.
- Later, his two other associates were arrested and his hard drives were seized as evidence.
Bombay HC's observations
Due process of law cannot be sacrificed at the altar of perceived peril to national security : Bombay High Court says in the judgment acquitting Professor GN Saibaba and others in alleged Maoist link case. pic.twitter.com/0CPxvtjBUm— Live Law (@LiveLawIndia) October 14, 2022
Was convicted for 'waging war' against India
He had challenged the 2017 trial court order convicting him along with Mahesh Tirkey, Hem Keshwdatta Mishra, Prashant Rahi, Vijay Nan Tirkey, and Pandu Pora Narote — who died in August this year. He was jailed under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) on charges of "waging war" against India. He was accused of helping Maoist groups with logistics and recruitment.
Vasantha Saibaba speaks up on husband's acquittal
There was struggle and patience involved in last 8 years when he was in jail: Ex-DU professor GN Saibaba's wife to PTI on his acquittal— Press Trust of India (@PTI_News) October 14, 2022
Suspended from college after arrest
Saibaba was a professor of English at the Ram Lal Anand College of DU and he was suspended following his arrest. He acted as the deputy secretary of the Revolutionary Democratic Front — said to be a Maoist organization — allegedly aiming to propagate Naxalite ideology in urban areas. He was reportedly in contact with Maoists in India, Nepal, and Sri Lanka.