A Mumbai court has set bail conditions for poet Varavara Rao, an accused in the Bhima-Koregaon case, and asked him to reside in the city and not to leave it without its permission.
The court also restricted Rao from having a “gathering of visitors” at his residence in Mumbai, and asked him not to indulge in any “criminal activities, similar to the case against him or otherwise” and not to contact any co-accused in the case or any other person involved in similar activities.
The Supreme Court had granted regular bail to Rao, 82, considering his advanced age and ailments.
His bail conditions were set by the special court hearing cases related to the National Investigation Agency recently, the details of which were made available on Saturday.
The bail conditions mandate Rao to reside within the area of greater Mumbai and not leave the city without prior permission of the NIA court.
He shall furnish the detailed address of his residence in greater Mumbai and his contact number, along with the numbers of his three close relatives and persons residing with him, the court said.
It directed the accused not to make any statement to the media — be it print, electronic and social — regarding to the case.
He shall not commit any other offence either of similar or any other nature and not indulge in any activity regarding which the present crime is registered against him, the court said.
Further, Rao has been directed not to contact or communicate with the co-accused or any other person involved in similar activities.
He shall not make any call, either domestic or international, to any person indulging in similar activities through any mode of communication, Rao’s bail condition reads.
The accused has been asked not to tamper with prosecution witnesses, either personally or through any other person.
He shall not abscond or try to flee from justice. There shall not be any gathering of visitors where Rao shall reside in greater Mumbai, the court said.
The court has asked the accused to furnish a fresh bond of Rs 50,000 with two solvent sureties of like amount.
The case relates to alleged inflammatory speeches made at an Elgar Parishad conclave in Pune on December 31, 2017, which police claimed triggered caste violence the next day near the Koregaon-Bhima war memorial on the outskirts of the Maharashtra city in which one person died.
The police had claimed that the conclave was organised by people with Maoist links. The National Investigation Agency (NIA) later took over the probe in the matter.
Rao was arrested on August 28, 2018 from his Hyderabad residence and is an under-trial in the case. The Pune police lodged an FIR on January 8, 2018 under various sections of the Indian Penal Code and the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.