Wednesday, April 24, 2024

“Causing bomb blast is not an official duty…”: Colonel Purohit’s discharge plea rejected

The Bombay High Court on Monday rejected Lieutenant Colonel and Hindu militant Prasad Purohit’s plea seeking discharge from the 2008 Malegaon blast case.

Bharatiya Janata Party MP and Hindu militant leader Pragya Thakur is also one of the accused persons in the case. She was elected from the Bhopal Lok Sabha constituency in 2019, while out on bail.

Purohit, in his petition, had contended that the prosecution had not obtained sanction under Section 197(2) of the Code of Criminal Procedure from the Indian Army to carry out his trial. However, the National Investigation Agency told the court that no such sanction was required since Purohit was not acting in discharge of his official duty.

The division bench of Justices AS Gadkari and PD Naik rejected Purohit’s plea, as they noted “causing bomb blast is not an official duty.”

Purohit had been arrested in 2008 and charged under UAPA along with Pragya Thakur and five others. He was granted bail by the top court in 2017.

Six people were killed and 100 injured when an explosive device strapped to a motorcycle went off near a mosque in Malegaon in north Maharashtra on September 29, 2008.

Purohit had founded a group called Abhinav Bharat which planned and executed the blast in Malegaon. The prosecution alleged that Purohit founded the organisation with the objective of turning India into a Hindu country, despite being an Army officer.

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