5 Oct 2023 5:12 AM GMT
Two accused in the Malegaon 2008 blast case on Wednesday called injury certificates prepared by one of the witness-doctors as “false” during recording of accused statements under section 313 of the CrPC.Accused Lt Col Prasad Purohit and Sudhakar Dwivedi denied injury certificates while the remaining accused, including BJP MP Pragya Singh Thakur said “koi jaankari nahin hai” (I...
Two accused in the Malegaon 2008 blast case on Wednesday called injury certificates prepared by one of the witness-doctors as “false” during recording of accused statements under section 313 of the CrPC.
Accused Lt Col Prasad Purohit and Sudhakar Dwivedi denied injury certificates while the remaining accused, including BJP MP Pragya Singh Thakur said “koi jaankari nahin hai” (I don’t have any information).
It may be recalled that over 88 injured and kin of the deceased were summoned from Malegaon after accused Sudhakar Dwivedi refused to admit medical documents regarding the injuries they sustained in the blast.
On September 29, 2008 at 9.35 pm a bomb went off between two chowks in Malegaon during the holy month of ‘Ramzan’ and the eve of ‘Navratrotsav’ killing six persons and injuring 101 of them. The bomb was fitted on an LML Freedom Motorcycle allegedly registered in Thakur’s name.
As for Purohit, the prosecution alleged he floated the organization Abhinav Bharat in 2007 with the objective of turning India into a Hindu Rashtra despite his Army background.
Several twists and turns later which included - change of investigating agency from ATS to NIA, discharge of five accused, dropping of MCOCA charge, disappearance of statements of certain crucial witnesses recorded under section 164 of CrPC, and examination of 323 witnesses – on Tuesday the court began recording the Section 313 statements of the accused.
Following an application by the accused, and in view of Section 313(5) of the CrPC the judge agreed to provide the accused with advance copies of the questions.
On Wednesday, Special Judge AK Lahoti explained over 110 questions to the accused taking the total count of questions to 170.
It was only after Pragya Singh Thakur arrived in court at 1.20pm that the accused statements commenced. The questions were based on the testimony of a doctor from Malegaon who had issued the maximum injury certificates.
Thakur’s lawyer also requested the court to avoid reading out and explaining gory details about the injuries considering his client’s ill health.
During the first half of the proceeding the prosecution and Purohit argued the officer’s plea to place two movement orders on record preceding his arrest, to fortify claims of illegal detention.
Special Public Prosecutor Avinash Rasal opposed the application on the ground that Purohit was repeatedly trying to place inadmissible documents on the record. The court had already rejected this plea once, he said.
Purohit submitted that the court refused his request earlier on the grounds the documents weren’t before the court. However, he has now procured those documents under RTI, he said. It is for this very reason the documents cannot be called confidential, it was argued.
“I am not trying to bring any document on record which is part of court of inquiry. The way the prosecution constructs the case brick by brick even I have that right to build my defence. If there are lacunas by the army… an officer (himself) was made to move without his knowledge. Which amounts to illegal detention,” his counsel argued.
Purohit said he was being denied simple aspects of his defence before a court empowered to punish him for life. “No one can understand national security better than me. I am known in the army for my golden silence,” he said to assert that the documents were confidential.
The special judge is likely to pass an order on this application on October 7. Meanwhile, the accused will continue recording their statements today.