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Bombay High Court denies bail to Sadhvi Pragya Singh in Malegaon blast case

Saturday, 5 April 2014 - 8:25am IST | Agency: dna

Says there is strong prima facie evidence against her

The Bombay High Court on Friday refused to grant bail to 2008 Malegaon blast accused Sadhvi Pragya Singh on the grounds that a strong prima facie case against the accused exist on the basis of the material on record and the same is sufficient to deny her bail.

A division bench of Justices PV Hardas and AS Gadkari in their 18-page order also noted that "the material available on record clearly indicates that the appellant (Sadhvi) is a conspirator and had actively helped the other co-accused by providing a motorcycle for explosion at Malegaon."

Thakur had challenged the Special MCOCA court order rejecting her application for bail on medical grounds in the HC. She contended that she has already spent over five years in prison and with no sight of the trial beginning any time soon; she should be released on bail. The petition also stated that she has been suffering from various ailments and probable cancer.

The National Investigating Agency (NIA), which is investigating the case, through their counsel Rohini Salian opposed the petition on the grounds that evidence was there to prove her direct role in the case and government hospitals were well equipped to give medical attention to her if required.

Accordingly the court accepted the arguments of the NIA and said, "We, therefore, see no reason to accede to the request that on the ground of ill health or for want of medical treatment, she needs to be released on bail."

Advocate Ganesh Sovani appearing for Sadhvi said, "They would be approaching the Supreme Court to challenge the HC order and seek appropriate relief."

Sadhvi is an accused in the September 29, 2008, blast at Malegaon in Nashik district in which six persons died and several others injured. She was arrested on October 23, 2008, in regard to her alleged involvement in the crime. The police had invoked Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act in this case and arrested other accused as well.

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