HC allows Bannanje Raja to meet lawyers

The High Court on Tuesday disposed of a petition filed by gangster Bannanje Raja seeking the court to direct the prison authorities to allow him to meet his advocates.

Justice Anand Byrareddy directed the petitioner to submit the list of advocates he would be meeting. Bannanje Raja has been kept in a high-security Hindalga Central Prison in Belagavi district. The government counsel has contended that Raja is facing threat to his life. Raja was allowed to meet his advocates, but not extended meetings. He was remanded in judicial custody till November 2 and shifted to  Central Prison at Parappana Agrahara in the City.

The Shivamogga police had produced Bannanje before a special Karnataka Control of Organised Crimes Act (KCOCA) court in connection with an extortion case in Shivamogga. The police filed an application seeking body warrant of Bannanje Raja in the case pertaining to extortion calls to an arecanut merchant. A police team, led by Shivamogga DySP Vishnuvardhan, produced Bannanje Raja and sought his custody. Since the regular KCOCA court judge was on leave, Raja was remanded in judicial custody at Parappana Agrahara prison. A senior police official said that Raja faces 44 criminal cases across the State and jurisdictional police will seek body warrant and take his custody.

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