Updated: March 18, 2017 8:11:54 am
THE SPECIAL court hearing the Malegaon 2008 blast case has ruled that an omission made in a 2011 order changed its meaning and impact allowing accused Lieutenant Colonel Prasad Purohit to remain in a hospital ward of the jail till date. The observation is in connection with an application made by co-accused Ramesh Upadhyay claiming that the omission was part of an ‘intentional collusion’ between Purohit and the court staff. Upadhyay has claimed that the words ‘for a limited specific period’ were altered in a 2011 order passed by the court which led to Purohit being lodged in the hospital ward not for a temporary period as was intended but a permanent one. The court, however, dismissed Upadhyay’s plea seeking criminal action against the court staff instead stating that “effective action can be taken or inquiry can be made in respect of alleged misconduct on administrative side”.
Last month, after Upadhyay’s plea, the court had directed Taloja jail authorities to submit the copy they had received of the order of April 30, 2011 regarding Purohit’s hospital ward stay. “It is clear from the said copy that while conveying the order to the jail authority the words ‘for a limited specific period’ were omitted as well as second paragraph of the order was also not conveyed to the jail authority,” the court has observed.
The court said that the then Sheristedar had conveyed the order to the jail authority as an authenticated copy of the order. “No doubt it is expected the Sheristedar should convey the order of the court to the concerned authority without making any material alteration in it. There is substance in the contention of accused no. 4 (Upadhyay) that omission of the words ‘for a limited specific period’ changed the meaning and impact of this order,” added the court.
The court, however, said that since the order was conveyed by the court employee as a government servant, instead of lodging complaint against the person, “it will (be) appropriate to take disciplinary action against such employee in respect of alleged misconduct”. The court ruled that if after an administrative inquiry it is found that the concerned employee has committed any misconduct, penalty can be posed or action can be taken against the person.
After the application was filed by Upadhyay, the Taloja jail officials also wrote to the court seeking a transfer of Purohit from the hospital ward to the high security cell. The application is pending for hearing. Purohit and others who were arrested in 2008 have been lodged in Taloja central prison ever since. While Purohit’s bail plea is pending before the Bombay High Court for orders, the trial court is hearing arguments on framing of charges.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines
- The Indian Express website has been rated GREEN for its credibility and trustworthiness by Newsguard, a global service that rates news sources for their journalistic standards.