The Supreme Court on Monday granted bail to Lieutenant Colonel Shrikant Prasad Purohit in the 2008 Malegaon blast case. Purohit who has been in jail for almost nine years, denies involvement in the conspiracy.
Prasad Srikant Purohit was in Indian army and one of the main accused among Sadhvi Pragya, Swami Dayanand Pandey, Rakesh Dhawde, Ramesh Upadhyay, Shyamlal Sahu, Shivnarain Kalsangra, Sudhakar Chaturvedi, Jagdish Mhatre and Sameer Kulkarni in the 2008 Malegaon blasts that claimed 6 lives and left many more injured. Sadhvi Pragya was already granted bail by Mumbai High Court on April 25 this year.
Swamay Dayanad Pandey, Sadhvi Pragya Thakur and Lt Col Prasad Srikant Purohit were made main accused by the NIA. The 4,000 page charge sheet prepared by the NIA had alleged that Malegaon was selected as the blast target because of a sizeable Muslim population there.
It had alleged that it was Dayanand Pandey who had instructed Shrikant Purohit to arrange explosive RDX, while Sadhvi Pragya Thakur owned the motorcycle which was used in the blast.
Ajay Rahirkar, another accused, allegedly organised funds for the terror act, while conspiracy meetings were held at the Bhonsala Military School in Nasik, it had said.
Purohit’s lawyer Harish Salve had appeared in the court on Thursday and asked the court to grant his client at least interim bail in the interest of justice. Salve in his argument told the apex court that his client was implicated falsely in the case and is a victim of political crossfire.
Salve’s arguments were opposed by the National Investigative Agency and argued that the order of Bomaby High Court of not granting Lieutenant Colonel interim bail should be upheld by the Supreme Court.
Pravin Mishra, an award-winning filmmaker, painter, and newspaper columnist based in Ahmedabad has questioned over the Apex Court’s decision. He tweeted “A lady from @TimesNow called me to join LIVE on Aug 21. I asked, “On which issue?” She said, “Col. Purohit will get bail” How do they know??”