A Supreme Court bench comprising of Justice Ibrahim Kalifulla and Justice Shiva Kirti Singh on Wednesday conveyed their doubts about charging Malegaon blasts accused under the provisions of MCOCA due to absence of “reliable material” to indicate prima facie violations of the provisions of the Act. This opens doors for the Special Court to consider their bail plea.
The Bench observed, "Their applications for bail can be considered for bail by the Special Judge... there is considerable doubt about their involvement.” The Trial Court has been asked to consider their bail applications within a span of a month.
Prima facie material was however found against another accused Rakesh Dawde, showing evidence of his "unlawful activity" linking him to Malegaon, Parbhani, Jalna blasts. The Bench hence observed that since the charges against him under MCOCA cannot be revoked at his stage, there is no scope for bail for him.
Earlier, the High Court had quashed the decision of the Special Court which had dropped charges under the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act. The High Court had ordered that Pragnya and ten other accused in the Malegaon bomb blast case will face trial under MCOCA.
In the blasts that occurred on September 29, 2008 killed seven people. The prosecution has claimed that Pragya, Purohit and nine others were part of an organised crime syndicate and their involvement in at least two more cases prompted invocation of MCOCA.
The accused have however denied any involvement in the blast. They have also refuted being co-conspirators in any organised crime syndicate. Purohit has already got bail in two cases under the Arms Act, but was denied interim bail in this case by the top court in 2012.
Read the Judgment here.