The Polit Bureau of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) has issued the following statement:

The new report released by an internationally reputed digital forensic analysis company (Arsenal Consulting) that fake documents later used as evidence of his “anti-national” were planted in the computer of Father Stan Swamy between the years 2017 to 2019. Father Stan was under surveillance from 2014. Forty files were placed in his computer during this period which he had never accessed according to the forensic report. Even more shocking is that the forensic evidence inquiry released in the public domain indicates that the hackers had prior knowledge of the impending arrest of Stan Swamy by the Pune police. Just a day before, they tried to erase traces of their activities. Worst of all Stan Swamy was refused bail, he was denied minimum facilities, his death in custody was nothing short of murder. He died in custody accused of a crime he never committed.

This is the fifth such report following forensic inquiry of the devices of other accused which clearly show a pattern of hacking and placing fake files in the computers of those targeted, files which the accused had no idea about nor did they ever access those files as proved by the forensic inquiry. Yet it is these fake files which constitute the main so-called evidence against all the accused in the Bhima Koregaon case, most of whom have been locked up under the draconian provisions of the UAPA.

It is highly condemnable that the NIA has refused to acknowledge this evidence leave alone institute its own inquiry. It is equally condemnable that the Central Government which has jurisdiction over the NIA has also refused to acknowledge these reports.

The latest report along with the earlier ones is a damning indictment of this government and the modus operandi of the NIA to target and to imprison those against whom they have no evidence except that which they have manufactured themselves. Today it is the Bhima Koregaon detainees who were targeted by this dangerous technology and malware. Tomorrow any opponent of this regime can be similarly targeted.

The CPI(M) demands that all the Bhima Koregaon accused be immediately released from jail; NIA should not deny their bail applications and or discharge appeals; an expert, fair re-examination taking into account the forensic evidence available should be made in a timebound framework.