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Assam: Anti-CAA leader Bitu Sonowal granted bail by NIA court

Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti leader Bitu Sonowal, who was arrested for his role in the anti-Citizenship Amendment Act movement in Assam, has been granted bail by NIA court on July 15th, 2020.

Sonowal, who was recently tested positive for COVID-19, is undergoing treatment in Gauhati Medical College and Hospital (GMCH).

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The NIA court on July 13th, 2020 granted bail to the Satra Mukti Sangram Samiti (SMSS) leader Manash Konwar, who was arrested for his role in the anti-Citizenship Amendment Act movement in Assam.

Konwar was lodged in Guwahati Central Jail since his arrest on December 22nd, 2019 (case number 13/19) along with KMSS leaders Akhil Gogoi, Dhairjya Konwar, and Bitu Sonowal.

Senior advocates Jiyaur Kamar and Sahtanau Barthakur represented Konwar at the court.

It may be mentioned here that bail pleas of KMSS general secretary Dhaijya Konwar and Bitu Sonowal would be heard by the NIA court on July 14th, 2020. Akhil Gogoi’s hearing for bail on the same case would be taken up by the court on July 15th, 2020.

Akhil, Bitu and Dhaijya were recently tested positive for the COVID-19 and were shifted to Gauhati Medical College and Hospital (GMCH) for medical assistance.

Also read: Assam: NIA grants bail to anti-CAA leader Manash Konwar

However, Akhil’s result was in question after two KMSS leaders Bitu Sonowal and Dhanjya Konwar were tested positive for the lethal virus on July 8th, 2020. Sonowal and Dhajya were admitted to the Mahendra Mohan Choudhury Hospital (MMCH) for medical assistance. Later, on July 9th, 2020 morning, both of them were shifted to the Gauhati Medical College and Hospital (GMCH).

Earlier, in a video released on social media, Kamal Kumar Medhi, former longstanding deputy of Akhil Gogoi accused the government of taking a very casual approach to the deteriorating health of the jailed leaders. “The jail authority and the government did not give any importance to their ill health concern in jail despite the issue was raised repeatedly,” Medhi said.

Akhil Gogoi was arrested on 12th Dec 2019, from Jorhat, sent to NIA custody for 10 days in Delhi, and taken back and lodged in Guwahati Central Jail since 26th Dec. KMSS Secretary Dhaijya Konwar and Bittu Sonowal, President of Chatra Mukti Sangram Samiti, a popular democratic student org in Assam, were arrested on 13th Dec and lodged in Guwahati Central Jail. On 7th Jan, both of them were tagged in the same fake UAPA case with Akhil Gogoi and are currently in NIA custody in Kamrup district. Manas Konwar was arrested on 13th Dec, released later and re-arrested from NIA Court, Guwahati, Assam towards the end of January 2020 being slapped with similar charges under UAPA. Earlier, the NIA failed to file a charge sheet within the mandatory 90 days, which warranted Akhil’s release but he was immediately arrested for other cases.

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