A special court rejected the bail application of Jesuit priest Father Stan Swamy who was arrested by the National Investigation Agency in October in the Elgar Parishad case. The frail 83 year old priest has been kept in Taloja Central Jail for the past 5 months. After he was arrested in October, last year, he was taken from Ranchi to Mumbai where a charge sheet was filed against him and seven others. He was then put in judicial custody.
In his bail application, Father Stan Swamy said that his arrest was malafide and uncalled for. He stated that he had been targeted by the investigating agency due to his writings about caste and land struggles of the people of India and the violation of the democratic rights of the marginalised citizens of India.
The chargesheet filed by the NIA claimed that Father Stam Swamy was a member of a banned organisation, CPI (Maoist) and that he was given the responsibility of spreading its activities after the arrest of party members/. Father Stan denied the allegations stating that his alleged links with the Maoist groups were based on some documents found on his laptop and the format in which the documents were found can be easily manipulated and planted on an insecure digital divide.He also stated that he was not connected with the Elgar Parishad in any way.
However, his bail plea was dismissed and the court refused to grant bail even on medical grounds that Father Stan suffered from Parkinson’s disease.