NIA to HC: No objection to Sadhvi Pragya’s bail plea

Published - November 17, 2016 03:23 am IST - Mumbai:

The National Investigation Agency (NIA) informed the Bombay High Court on Wednesday that it has “no objection” to Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur applying for bail in the 2008 Malegaon blasts.

Additional Solicitor General Anil Singh, appearing for the agency, made this declaration before a Division Bench of Justice Ranjit More and Justice Shalini Phansalkar Joshi.

Nisar Ahmed Sayyed Bilal, who was injured in the blast, wanted to file an intervention. She had earlier filed one before the special NIA court which was rejected. The court directed the agency to file a compilation of statements of all witnesses who had deposed before the NIA and the previous prosecuting agency, the Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS). It adjourned the matter for hearing on November 29.

Changed circumstances

On August 22, Sadhvi had moved the High Court stating that the special NIA court had failed to take the changed circumstances between November 2015 — when her last bail plea was rejected — and June 2016 into consideration.

On June 7, the agency had told the NIA court that it had “no objection” to the bail plea. “Based on the charge sheet filed, we have stated that there is no case made out against Sadhvi,” the prosecutor had then said. “We have left it to the court to decide on the bail plea.”

However, on June 28, the NIA court rejected her bail plea.

On May 13, the central agency filed its supplementary charge sheet that dropped charges under the stringent Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) against Pragya and 5 others. Sadhvi was charge-sheeted in 2009 by the Maharashtra ATS, which said her motorcycle was used to plant the bomb.

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