The Chhattisgarh Police Tuesday withdrew its case against Delhi University professor Nandini Sundar, JNU professor Archana Prasad and 19 others in connection with the murder of a tribal man allegedly by Maoists in November last year.
The Sukma police had registered the FIR against them alleging that they were involved in the murder of Santram Baghel, a villager in the insurgency-hit Nama village. Later that month, the Chhattisgarh Police had assured the Supreme Court it would not arrest the accused after the court said it was inclined to stay the FIR registered against them in connection with the murder.
Baghel was killed allegedly by Naxals on November 4 at his residence in Nama village in Tongpal area. The professors were booked under sections 120 B (criminal conspiracy), 302 (murder), 147 (punishment for rioting), 148 and 149 of IPC at Tongpal police station.
The complaint against Sundar and others was filed by Baghel’s wife. “As per the complaint lodged by the victim’s wife, her husband had been getting threats from Maoists since he and other villagers had complained against Sundar in May this year. Even armed Maoists were referring to that complaint and anti-Maoist demonstrations while attacking Baghel on Friday,”
The complainant, Vinita Baghel, had alleged that a fact-finding team that included Sundar had earlier warned her husband, Samnath Baghel, not to oppose Maoists. Sundar has rejected the allegations, saying the case against them was “absurd” and “fabricated”. Sundar has said that she was not in Chhattisgarh at the time of the incident.