New Delhi: The Uttar Pradesh government has extended the application of the draconian National Security Act on Bhim Army chief, Chandrashekhar Azad, by another three months. The period for which the NSA applied on Azad was due to expire on May 2. With another three-month extension, the NSA will now be applicable on Azad till August 2.
Lawyers for Azad had filed an application in the Allahabad high court to quash the detention order for him under the NSA. However, on Tuesday, the court rejected the application.
Azad, along with several other leaders of the Bhim Army, was arrested by the UP police in June 2017 and booked under 27 separate cases in relation to the violence that broke out in Saharanpur in May 2017. In November, the Allahabad high court granted bail to Azad noting that the charges were politically motivated. However, a day later, the Uttar Pradesh government booked Azad under the NSA, using which the state can place any citizen under preventive detention without legal recourse.
The Bhim Army is contemplating approaching the Supreme Court against the extension of the NSA. “This is the BJP’s political vendetta. The NSA on Chandrashekhar is totally illegal. The government is only trying to suppress our voice. We will now approach the Supreme Court against this decision,” said Manjit Nautiyal, spokesperson for the Bhim Army.