Kolkata, Oct 12 (PTI) A special NIA court here on Monday adjourned hearing of a prayer by the National Investigation Agency seeking custody of Chhatradhar Mahato, a former leader of Maoist-backed People's Committee Against Police Atrocities (PCAPA), after his lawyer claimed that he was unwell.
Mahato's lawyer submitted that he was unable to appear before the court as directed by it owing to illness.
Special NIA court judge Prasenjit Biswas adjourned hearing in the matter till October 16 and directed Mahato to appear it on that date.
The agency has prayed for custodial interrogation of Mahato in connection with the killing of a local CPI(M) leader in 2009 at Lalgarh, once a hotbed of Maoist activities in the Jangalmahal area of West Bengal.
The NIA has charged Mahato under various sections of Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, apart from waging war against the country.
Mahato failed to appear before the special NIA court on two occasions earlier also, claiming illness.
In August, Mahato was questioned by NIA in connection with the murder case of the CPI(M) leader and the October 2009 hijacking of New Delhi-bound Rajdhani Express from Bhubaneswar for five hours at Jhargram station.
The 57-year-old man was a prominent leader of the Lalgarh movement spearheaded by the PCAPA.
Mahato was arrested on September 26, 2009, from present-day Jhargram district for an attempt on the life of former chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee in Kantapahari area of Paschim medinipur district on November 2, 2008.
He was set free in February this year following a reduction of his life term to 10 years by Calcutta High Court for his good conduct.
Mahato was inducted into the Trinamool Congress state committee in July. PTI AMR NN NN