Timing — that is what it came down to for lawyer and long-time workers' rights activist Sudha Bharadwaj’s bail plea, which was accepted by Bombay High Court on Wednesday, 1 December.
Bhardwaj, who is one of the accused in the Bhima Koregaon case, was arrested on 28 August 2018 and has been in police custody for the past three years at Byculla Jail.
In her bail plea, she argued that she should be granted a default bail as the Pune sessions court judge who had passed several important pre-trial orders in the case was not a designated judge to hear cases under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act. But this same request of appeal, however, was denied to the other accused in the case, even though it was the same court that heard their case, because of the timing of when they filed their default bail pleas.
The National Investigation Agency has stated that they will appeal the HC order in court but on what legal grounds would this be?
And why were the others not given bail under the same conditions? How exactly do default bails work?
To discuss this, for today’s episode we spoke to Vakasha Sachdev, The Quint’s Legal Editor.