A SPECIAL court has given interim permission to retired Major Ramesh Upadhyay, an accused in the 2008 Malegaon blast case, to travel to Uttar Pradesh to fight the upcoming elections. Upadhyay was allowed to contest the polls last month after he expressed his desire to stand from Bairia constituency in his native town Ballia in eastern UP as an independent candidate.
Upadhyay had sought permission from the special NIA court to be allowed to travel to UP for a month for campaigning. Special Judge S D Tekale has allowed Upadhyay to travel from February 6 to March 6 along with a police escort party. Upadhyay will have to bear the cost of the escort party team, the court said. Special public prosecutor Avinash Rasal said the court had also set other conditions for his release, including informing the court about where he would stay in UP and details about the people he would live with.
Upadhyay, who has been in judicial custody since 2008, had contested from the same constituency in 2012 too. The court had then rejected his plea seeking provisional bail. Upadhyay, lodged at Taloja central jail, was arrested by the Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad in 2008 for his alleged role in the blast that killed six and injured 101.
Vishal Upadhyay, his son and campaign manager, had said last month they were in talks with the local BJP leaders for a ticket from the constituency.