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SC notice to Chhattisgarh on Soni Sori bail plea

PTI

A January 2, 2013 photo shows a protest by All India Students Association in New Delhi demanding release of tribal teacher Soni Sori who has been languishing in a Chhattisgarh jail for over a year. Photo: V. V. Krishnan.
The HinduA January 2, 2013 photo shows a protest by All India Students Association in New Delhi demanding release of tribal teacher Soni Sori who has been languishing in a Chhattisgarh jail for over a year. Photo: V. V. Krishnan.

The Supreme Court on Monday admitted the of , a tribal teacher, and journalist Lingaram Kodopi, who are in jail for their alleged links with Maoists, and sought response from government.

A bench of justices S S Nijjar and F M Ibrahim Kalifulla issued notice to the state government on the plea of Ms. Sori and Mr. Kodopi and directed it to respond by October 28 when the case will be taken up for further hearing.

They approached the apex court challenging the Chhattisgarh High Court order denying them bail on July 8.

They were arrested for allegedly receiving money on behalf of from the Essar group in Chhattisgarh.

36-year-old Sori and her activist-nephew Kodopi (25) were arrested on charges of acting as Maoist conduits in alleged payouts of protection money by the group to Maoists.

According to police, Mr. Kodopi and B. K. Lala, a building contractor with Ltd, were nabbed with Rs 15 lakh cash, which was allegedly meant to be paid to Maoist guerrillas on September 9, 2011, from a weekly market at Palnar village in Dantewada district of Chhattisgarh.

Police had claimed that Ms. Sori was also associated with Mr. Kodopi, but she managed to flee the spot.

Ms. Sori was arrested on October 4, 2011, in New Delhi and Essar Steel Ltd’s General Manager DVCS Verma was also arrested in this connection.

However, the Dantewada district court had granted bail to Mr. Verma and contractor Mr. B.K. Lala.

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