Maharashtra Congress leader Prithviraj Chavan on Saturday urged for a Special Investigation Team (SIT) probe in the Bhima Koregaon case. According to him, an SIT team should be formed to get the real truth out. He said, "The real culprits in the case are yet to be arrested. The ones who instigated riots and violence are hiding. A proper investigation needs to be conducted."
Raising fingers at the then BJP government led by Devendra Fadnavis, Chavan said, "The then BJP government has completely misused their power."
A day after Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh and Deputy CM Ajit Pawar held a review meeting with Pune police on the Bhima-Koregaon case, the NIA took over the probe. Deshmukh condemned the move and said that the transfer happened without the state government's consent. The state government was mulling to constitute an SIT to review the evidence and probe into the case.
On December 18, last year, the police had framed draft charges against the nineteen accused including the nine activists - Sudhir Dhawale, Rona Wilson, Surendra Gadling, Mahesh Raut, Shoma Sen, Arun Ferriera, Vernon Gonsalves, Sudha Bharadwaj and Varavara Rao. The charges included 'conspiracy to assassinate PM Narendra Modi', 'overthrow the government', and 'waging war against the Government of India' under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA). The charges also stated that some arrested persons are active members of the banned CPI party.
The violence had erupted at Koregaon-Bhima village in Pune district on January 1, 2018, where supporters had gathered to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Bhima Koregaon. This resulted in the death of one person and leaving several injured. While the Pune police booked several activists for inciting the violence, they are also being probed for having alleged Naxal links.