2008 Malegaon blast case: Lt Colonel Prasad Purohit moves Supreme Court, demands SIT probe into conspiracy charges

Lieutenant Colonel Prasad Purohit, one of the accused in the 2008 Malegaon blasts case, has moved the Supreme Court demanding a court-monitored Special Investigation Team (SIT) probe. Purohit claimed that there was an alleged conspiracy to frame him in the 2008 blast case and in his plea has relied on army reports.

Purohit also said that he was providing the information to the army and the security forces and not to other outfits such as Islamic State and his claims can be verified by the SIT probe, reports India Today.

File image of Lt Colonel Shrikant Purohit. PTI

File image of Lt Colonel Prasad Purohit. PTI

Justice UU Lalit recused from the case on Monday and the case will now go to a different bench, reported CNN News18.

In June 2018, it was reported that all the accused in the Malegaon blast case were already out on bail and the National Investigation Agency (NIA) court said that all the previous bonds and sureties submitted by them were to continue. The case had seen various twists and turns as the investigation was passed on to various agencies.

Soon after the blast in Malegaon, a town in north Maharashtra with a sizeable Muslim population, the Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS), which probed the case first, booked Noorul Huda, Raees Ahmed, Salman Farsi, Farogh Magdumi, Shaikh Mohammed Ali, Asif Khan, Mohammed Zahid, Abrar Ahmed and Shabbir Masiullah Batteriwala for the blast which claimed six lives when an improvised explosive device strapped to a motorcycle went off while 101 persons were injured. The CBI took over the case a year later, and endorsed the line of investigation taken by ATS.

However, the NIA, to which the probe was transferred in 2011, filed a charge sheet absolving them of all charges, and instead named four others, including Sadhvi Pragya and Colonel Purohit, who were members of a Hindu extremist organisation.

Following this, in April last year, a special court in Mumbai discharged them from the case, as the NIA submitted that it had found no evidence against them. The ATS moved the Bombay High Court against the trial court's order, terming it as contrary to the evidence on record.

Initially, the 2008 case was probed by the Maharashtra Police and the ATS. In April 2011, it was taken over by the NIA.

Lt Colonel Purohit is accused of floating Abhinav Bharat, a right wing Hindu organization for collecting funds to procure arms and explosives and also organising meetings where the Malegaon attack was planned.

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Updated Date: Aug 27, 2018 15:03:15 IST

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