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Rights activist Binayak Sen, who walked out of jail here Monday after the Supreme Court granted him bail in a case of sedition and being a Maoist, was told by the Raipur sessions court that he could not leave the country without its permission.

He was also asked to surrender his passport and ordered to furnish a bond and surety of Rs.50,000 each.

Sen was sentenced by a Chhattisgarh trial court Dec 24, 2010, for sedition. Sen was accused of acting as a courier between Maoist ideologue Narayan Sanyal and Kolkata-based businessman Guha, both of whom have been jailed for life.

Sen challenged the Feb 10 order of the high court, which rejected his bail plea.

On April 15, the Supreme Court backed him and said in a scathing observation that a person does not become a Gandhian just because he is found with a biography of Mahatma Gandhi.

“We are in a democratic country. At best, he (Binayak Sen) is a sympathiser. There are many sympathisers of a cause,” the apex court bench of Justices Harjit Singh Bedi and Chandramauli Kumar Prasad then said.

 After remaining behind bars for nearly four months, civil rights activist Binayak Sen was released this evening from the Chattisgarh’s central prison where he is serving a life sentence, three days after the Supreme Court granted him bail.

The 61-year-old old medical doctor, who was sentenced to life by a local court on charges of sedition and links with Maoists, was reunited with his family amid emotional and poignant scenes, as his two daughters–Aparajita and Pranhita –jumped on to him and were locked in a tight embrace.

Sen was also hugged and kissed by his mother Anusuya who said he looked “fine.”

Hours before he walked free out of his cell in the Raipur prison, Additional District and Sessions Judge BP Verma directed Sen to surrender his passport as a bail condition in line with the Supreme Court order and that he be released on a personal bond and surety of Rs 50,000 each.

Verma also ordered Sen not to leave the country and appear in the High Court during hearings as and when required.

Sen has been lodged in the prison since December 24 when he was convicted and sentenced to life.

Clad in his trademark kurta-pyjama, Sen smiled and waved to hundreds of his supporters who had gathered in front of the prison where hordes of newsmen and photographes jostled with each other to get a vantage point. Chaos prevailed with his supporters and mediamen trying to get close to him.

“I am very very happy today. I wish everybody should be happy as I am this evening. We just hugged each other. I kissed him,” Anusuya said.

Anusuya said her son smiled and said nothing but looked fine.”He looked fine. He looked very happy. He smiled. He said nothing. We were emotionally spellbound. We couldn’t say anything. Today is a special day,” she added.


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