The Bombay High Court Friday dismissed an appeal filed by Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur, the prime accused in the 2008 Malegaon bomb blast case, seeking bail.
Observing that the evidence clearly indicated she was the “main conspirator” behind the explosion that killed five Muslims on September 29, 2008, the court refused to grant bail to Thakur, who has spent over five years in jail.
Finding no fault in the order of a special Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) court that had rejected Thakur’s bail application on September 25, 2012, a division bench of Justices P V Hardas and A S Gadkari observed: “Taking into consideration the material available on record, it cannot be said the appellant (Thakur) is not guilty of the offence for which she is charged. The material available on record clearly indicates that the appellant is a conspirator and had actively helped the other co-accused by providing a motorcycle for the explosion of a bomb at Malegaon. We are of the opinion that a strong prima facie case against the appellant exists on the basis of material available on record and the same is sufficient to deny bail to the her.”
The court also took note of the statement of co-accused Sudhakar Dhar Dwivedi alias Dayanand Pande’s confessional statement recorded under the MCOCA.
In his statement, Pande had stated that on June 29, 2008, a meeting was held in Jabalpur during which Thakur was present. “The appellant in his (Pande) presence, had told that she had asked Colonel Purohit (co-accused) to provide explosives for the protection of the Hindu community,” the court recorded.
Thakur’s lawyers U R Lalit, Rameshwar Gite and Ganesh Sovani argued that Pande retracted his statement and it was not corroborated.