After Pressure from Students & Activists, Akhil Gogoi Granted Bail in 3 Cases

Gogoi was granted bail by the Gauhati High Court in three cases lodged by the Assam Police. However, he will remain in jail for the cases being probed by the NIA.

On Sunday, more than 100 eminent writers from Assam had written an open letter to Assam Chief Minister Sonowal, demanding proper medical treatment for Gogoi and other activists who have tested COVID-19 positive and admitted to hospitals. Hundreds of Assamese students across the country had also written to Sonowal, demanding the immediate release of peasant leader Akhil Gogoi who was arrested by NIA for his alleged role in violent anti-CAA protests.

In the face of this mounting pressure to release Gogoi, he has today been granted bail by the Gauhati High Court in three cases lodged by the Assam Police. However, he will remain in jail for the cases being probed by the National Investigation Agency (NIA).

The three cases, for which Gogoi was arrested on May 29 while he was already in jail, were related to burning of a post office, a circle office and a branch of the United Bank of India in Chabua during violent protests against the controversial Citizenship (Amendment) Act. NIA is investigating two cases, which were initially registered at Chandmari and Chabua police stations, related to the alleged role of Gogoi in the violent protests.

Hearing the bail applications in the three cases registered at Chabua police station in Dibrugarh district, Justice Manash Ranjan Pathak granted bail to the Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti (KMSS) leader. Gogoi’s advocate Santanu Borthakur said: “Now he has got bail in all cases, except the two NIA cases. The hearing in one of these two cases will start in the next few days. We hope the court will grant bail to him.”

Gogoi, the adviser of KMSS, had tested positive for COVID-19 inside Guwahati Central Jail on July 11 and is being treated at Gauhati Medical College and Hospital (GMCH) at present.

In the midst of the intense anti-CAA movement, Gogoi was arrested on December 12 last year from Jorhat as a “preventive measure” in view of the deteriorating law and order situation in the state and his three colleagues were taken into custody the next day. The four leaders were later arrested in a number of old cases registered across different police stations in Assam. They have got bail in most of these cases.

The special NIA court had granted bail to Gogoi on March 17 in the Chandmari police station case and subsequently to others after the investigating agency failed to file a charge sheet within the specified period of 90 days. The Gauhati High Court later stayed the bail. On May 29, the NIA filed the charge sheet against Gogoi and three of his colleagues for sedition and terror activities.

KMSS leader Bittu Sonowal, who was arrested by NIA along with Gogoi, was granted bail by a special NIA court on Wednesday. On Monday, another KMSS leader Manash Konwar got bail by the special NIA court here and he was released from the jail on Tuesday. The fourth associate, Dhaijya Konwar, has not yet received bail. He along with Gogoi and Sonowal are being treated at GMCH after testing positive for COVID-19.

Read: Akhil Gogoi shows Covid-19 symptoms: Not treated despite Court Orders

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