The Bombay High Court on Monday yet again refused to defer framing of charges against Lt. Col. Prasad Purohit, one of the main accused in 2008 Malegaon bomb blast case that killed six and injured over a 100 people.
A division bench of Justice SS Shinde and Justice AS Gadkari were hearing an application filed by Purohit, who had previously filed a similar application which was rejected by another bench headed by Justice SS Shinde.
The court will hear Purohit's plea challenging the validity of mandatory government sanction given to prosecute him under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA).
On December 18, 2017, the Bombay High Court refused to quash the sanction for Purohit’s prosecution. Purohit then moved the Supreme Court but was asked to go back to the high court again and file a fresh plea which is now pending.
Purohit had previously sought directions to the trial court to defer framing of charges against him until his main appeal before the high court challenging the validity of government sanction to prosecute him was decided. This application was also rejected.
On October 23, 2018, the high court had asked Special NIA Judge Vinod Padalkar, who is presiding over the 2008 blast trial, to expedite the hearing observing that the case has been pending for a decade now and framing of charges is yet to take place.
The court took note of previous orders of the Supreme Court and high court asking the trial court to expedite the trial and refused to stay framing of charges that will start on Tuesday.
NIA counsel Sandesh Patil was directed to file a reply on Purohit's plea by November 21.