Bangalore: Relief - High court grants bail to Naveen Soorinje
Daijiworld Media Network - Bangalore
Bangalore, Mar 18: In a huge relief to journalist Naveen Soorinje, who was arrested last November in connection with the infamous Padil home stay case, the high court on Monday March 18 granted him bail.
Soorinje, who was one of the 44 accused in the case, was arrested on November 7 in a flash operation by Kankanady police led by circle inspector Ravish Naik.
It is said that Vijaykumar, one of the victims in the attack, had written a letter to the Press Council of India alleging that Soorinje had been falsely accused in the case by the police to cover their own inefficiency. The letter was produced in the court on Monday during the hearing, and Vijaykumar also appeared as a witness for Soorinje and claimed that he had in fact tried to save them.
Also, it was noted that the video footage of the incident did not show Naveen Soorinje as taking part in the attack.
Justice K Sreedhar Rao granted him bail on a surety bond of Rs 5 lac and on the condition that he should not attempt to destroy any evidence in the case.
Ever since Soorinje's arrest, various associations and members of the media have been calling for his release. His bail petitions were at first rejected by the JMFC court, and then a stay on the FIR against him was ordered by the high court. However, despite the stay order, he was not released. Later, the high court too rejected him bail.
Mediapersons in Bangalore went on a hunger strike, after which the government dropped charges against him. The decision was questioned by the high court.
With the bail order now coming from the high court, Soorinje is expected to be released from the district jail in a couple of days.