The Supreme Court on Tuesday issued notice to the Chhattisgarh government on a special leave petition seeking bail, filed by Kolkata-based businessman Pijush Guha, co-accused with rights activist Binayak Sen in the sedition case, and sentenced to life imprisonment.
A vacation Bench comprising Justices G.S. Singhvi and C.K. Prasad, after hearing counsel Prashant Bhushan for the petitioner, issued notice to the State government seeking its response by May 31 and directed the matter to be listed on that date.
Mr. Guha was convicted along with Dr. Sen and Naxal ideologue Narayan Sanyal, and they were awarded life sentence. Dr. Sen was granted bail by the Supreme Court after the Chhattisgarh High Court denied him bail.
In his appeal, Mr. Guha said he had already spent four years in jail. He said it was pertinent to mention that Dr. Sen — who was alleged to have couriered letters from Raipur jail to him — had already been released on bail.
Mr. Guha said there was no evidence to even remotely suggest that he was distributing or circulating or using this material to incite violence or create public disorder.
He said: “At best, the case of the prosecution against him is one of possession of a couple of Maoist bulletins which does not constitute the crime of sedition. No case whatsoever of sedition or conspiracy to commit sedition is made out against him.”
Mr. Guha said his explanation that he had been falsely implicated and the letters planted on him was not considered by the High Court.