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Writer and activist Anand Teltumbde was arrested at 3.30 am from Mumbai domestic airport when he was returning to Mumbai from Kochi. Adv Pradeep Mandhyan spoke to Inspector Indulkar from Pune who was at airport to take him into custody. Indulkar claimed Teltumbde was being arrested since his bail had been rejected by the Pune trial court! This action blatantly violates the Supreme Court order dated 14th January which gave Anand protection from arrest for 4 weeks so that he could approach the courts for bail.

As per the above SC order Teltumbde could only be arrested after the completion of 4 weeks from the date of the order, unless he could get bail from the lower courts or the High Court. This 4 week period of protection from arrest would expire on 11th February. So his arrest early this morning is a blatant violation of the above order.

Teltumbde came to Mumbai as he was scheduled to file his anticipatory bail petition in the High Court this morning through his advocate, Senior Counsel Mihir Desai.

Five activists – Shoma Sen, Surendra Gadling, Mahesh Raut, Rona Wilson and Sudhir Dhawale – were arrested by the Pune Police in June and five more – Gautam Navlakha, Arun Ferreira, Vernon Gonsalves, Sudha Bharadwaj and Varavara Rao – were arrested in August. They were accused of being involved in an event that preceded the violence between Dalits and Marathas at Bhima Koregaon. The five activists arrested in August were subsequently placed under house arrest. Teltumbde and activist Stan Swamy’s homes and offices were searched.

After the Supreme Court rejected Teltumbde’s appeal to quash the FIR on January 14, he wrote an open letter to the public, asking for support.

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