2008 Malegaon blasts: HC seeks NIA response to accused's petition

Mumbai: The Bombay High Court on Thursday issued notice to the National Investigation Agency (NIA), seeking reply to a letter written by an accused in the 2008 Malegaon blast case seeking to make a witness a co-accused.

The division bench of justices S C Dharmadhikari and A M Thipsay was hearing a petition based on the letter written by accused Samir Kulkarni.

Image for representation only. AFP

Image for representation only. AFP

According to Kulkarni, one of the prosecution witnesses, in his statement before the magistrate said he was aware that a blast was going to take place in Malegaon.

The witness also revealed that a conspiracy to assassinate RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat was afoot, and there were talks of another explosion.

Kulkarni, in his letter, says he came across this witness' statement in the the charge sheet filed by Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad.

"Witness has clearly said he was aware of the bomb making. Hence he should be arrested and made an accused," argued Kulkarni, who argued in the court today.

He moved the high court after his letters to ATS and NIA fetched no response, he said.

The court asked what was the response of NIA and ATS on Kulkarni's complaint. "When this was brought on record what was the response of the prosecution? Did the prosecution consider arraigning him (the witness) as an accused?" Justice Dharmadhikari asked.

Additional public prosecutor Jayesh Yagnik said as the matter was now being probed by NIA, another prosecutor will have to be appointed to represent it. So the court issued a notice to NIA, and directed it to file a proper reply within three weeks.

According to the prosecution, Kulkarni, one of the chief promoters of right-wing organisation Abhinav Bharat, had taken part in three meetings in Nashik where the blast conspiracy was hatched.

The blast in Malegaon on 29 September, 2008 left eight persons dead and 80 injured. Eleven accused, including former army officer Lt Col Prasad Purohit, and sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur are facing trial in the case.


Updated Date: Aug 01, 2013 21:57 PM

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