Supreme Court has finally granted bail to the 2008 Malegaon blast accused Srikant Lt Col Purohit who has been lodged in the prison for the past 9 years.
The National Investigating Agency(NIA) had opposed his bail during the last hearing after Purohit reached out to the Supreme Court challenging the verdict given by the Mumbai High Court. The NIA argued that there was evidence against him. On August 17, the Supreme Court had reserved its verdict on Lt Col Purohit’s plea seeking interim bail.
Lt Col Purohit had moved the Supreme Court challenging the Bombay High Court’s order dismissing his bail plea.
During the hearing, senior advocate Harish Salve who appeared for Lt Col Purohit while arguing on behalf of his client had said that he has been in jail for the past nine years with charges being framed against him. He said that the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act or MCOCA charge has already been dropped against him and therefore he is entitled to getting interim bail. Purohit told the Supreme Court that he was only acting as a mole on behalf of the Indian Army and was not involved in terrorist activity being framed against him.
The 4,000-page charge sheet had alleged that Malegaon was selected as the blast target because of a sizeable Muslim population. It had named Pragya Thakur, Purohit and co-accused, Swami Dayanand Pandey as the key conspirators.