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Father Stan Swamy’s custodial death: How far does the right to bail extend in the country?

On July 6, Father Stan Swamy, a Jesuit priest and tribal rights activist died in custody. Last year, he was arrested in a case related to 2017 Bhima Koregaon violence in Pune. Father Swamy had Parkinson’s disease and was detected with Covid-19 in May.

Why is it hard for someone as old as Stan Swamy to get bail. Suno India’s Menaka Rao spoke to advocate Abhinav Sekhri, a criminal lawyer based in Delhi, and is on retainer with Internet Freedom Foundation. He writes extensively on criminal law and runs a blog called Proof of Guilt. He recently wrote a paper on the bail regime in the country and how it is antithetical to the core principle in our criminal justice system- that an accused is innocent until proven guilty.

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Show notes:

Elgaar parishad case: Stan Swamy dead
The Bailable v. Non-Bailable Classification in Indian Criminal Procedure by Abhinav Sekhri :: SSRN
https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/cf_dev/AbsByAuth.cfm?per_id=2801004
The Proof of Guilt
The Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act
The Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1985
National Investigation Agency vs Zahoor Ahmad Shah Watali on 2 April, 2019
Union Of India vs KA Najeeb on 1 February, 2021
NCRB report: Sedition cases up in 2019 but conviction at all-time low
Arrested activists: 67% ended in acquittal or discharge under UAPA Acts

Father Stan Swamy’s custodial death: How far does the right to bail extend in the country?

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