WHILE 2008 Malegaon blasts accused Lt-Col Prasad Purohit has always maintained that he had kept his superiors informed about activities going on in Abhinav Bharat organisation, a confidential letter written by the Deputy Directorate General of Military Intelligence in 2011 to the then Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad chief Rakesh Maria states that the directorate had no information and that Purohit had not made any such communication.
The confidential letter is part of the National Investigation Agency’s (NIA) latest chargesheet in the case.
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“There is no input available with this office regarding any official communication made by Lt-Col P S Purohit to his superior officers pertaining to any terrorist related inputs or information about the meetings of Abhinav Bharat,” the letter states. This is part of the correspondence between Additional Director General of Police (Anti-Terrorism Squad) Rakesh Maria and Brigadier Gautam Deb.
This annexure to the chargesheet mentions a letter sent from Maria’s office on March 24, 2011.
“Notwithstanding the above, we have also written to the concerned offices for inputs in this regard, for further confirmation,” the letter further states.
However, it is unclear whether there was further communication by the military authorities on their findings from the other offices to either the ATS or the NIA. Apart from this letter, the NIA has not included any other document pertaining to this issue in its second supplementary chargesheet filed on Friday. Purohit, a military intelligence officer, has claimed that he had been reporting about the information he had gathered about Abhinav Bharat to his superior officers.
Defending Purohit, a source close to him claimed that the letter was chosen selectively by the previous investigators to put him in the dock.
“This letter was chosen selectively under pressure from the UPA government to book Purohit in the case. The bluff of the previous investigators was called out when an application was made before the court to produce documents from the Court of Inquiry proceedings against Purohit. Those documents are now part of the court record after they were provided by the Army last week. They will make it clear that Purohit had informed about each and every detail to his superior officers about the activities of Abhinav Bharat,” the source said.
It was further pointed out that the letter also does not conclusively say that no such communication was made. “The letter will not stand as evidence against Purohit. It clearly states that other offices will be approached and therefore is inconclusive. The Inquiry documents will complete the evidence showing Purohit had informed his seniors,” the source added.
Purohit had last week attained the truncated documents pertaining to the Court of Inquiry, which the Army too has agreed to provide to the special NIA court as and when required for referral during the trial.