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Non-Bailable Warrant Issued Against Varavara Rao in 2005 Maoists Attack Case

Varavara Rao, 82, who is an accused in the Bhima Koregaon case, is out on bail for medical reasons.

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<div class="paragraphs"><p>Varavara Rao is an accused in the Elgar Parishad Maoist links case.&nbsp;</p></div>
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A non-bailable warrant (NBW) has been issued against Telugu poet and activist Varavara Rao by an additional sessions court at Madhugiri in Tumkuru district of Karnataka, pertaining to a 2005 Maoists attack case, his lawyer said on Saturday, 23 October.

Rao, 82, is out on bail for medical reasons. He is an accused in the Bhima Koregaon case.

His lawyer said that he will be moving the Bombay High Court on Monday, 25 October, challenging the warrant.

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The 2005 case pertains to an attack on police officers by Maoists in Tumakuru on 10 February 2005 in which Rao and another poet and activist named Gaddar were named as accused, Rao's lawyer S Balan told PTI.

Six police personnel and a civilian were killed in the attack that took place at Venkatammanahalli in Pavagada taluk in Karnataka.

The Bombay High Court on 14 October had said that the activist doesn't need to surrender before the Taloja prison authorities until 28 October. His plea seeking an extension of the bail will be heard on Tuesday, 26 October.

The Bhima Koregaon Case

In 2018, Rao, along with several other activists, was arrested and booked under the stringent Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA).

They were accused of making inflammatory speeches at the Elgar Parishad conclave held at Shaniwar Wada in Pune, Maharashtra on 31 December 2017, that had allegedly triggered violence at the Bhima-Koregaon war memorial the following day, killing one, and injuring many.

The first charge sheet was filed by the Pune police in November 2018. Police claimed that the people who were arrested had “active links” with the banned Communist Party of India (Maoist), and accused them of planning to "assassinate" Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Rao was released on interim bail from Taloja Central Prison in February 2021 for a period of six months on health grounds under the condition that he needs to be in the jurisdiction of the Special National Investigation Agency Court. He is also barred from speaking to the media.

The Bombay High Court had later extended his temporary bail term till 28 October. He had to return to the jail on 5 September.

(With inputs from PTI.)

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