Dayanand Pandey says ATS maligning him

December 12th, 2008 - 9:14 pm ICT by IANS  

Mumbai, Dec 12 (IANS) Malegaon bomb blast accused Dayanand Pandey Friday complained to a special court that the Anti Terrorism Squad (ATS) police were giving false information to some TV news channels that some obscene CDs had been found among the articles seized from his ashram in Jammu.Pandey, a self proclaimed Shankaracharya (seer) of Sharada Sarvadnya Peeth in Jammu, told the designated MCOCA (Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act) court that neither any of the four laptops nor any compact discs seized from him contained any obscene material.

Claiming that he commanded great respect among his followers, Pandey accused the ATS of attempting to malign his image by spreading lies.

After noting down Pandey’s complaint, the court extended his magisterial custody remand to Dec 26.

The ’seer’, whom his disciples call Swamy Amritanand Dev, is among the 10 Malegaon bomb blast accused booked under the stringent provisions of the MCOCA, under which an accused can be kept in detention for 180 days without any chargesheet being filed.

Six people were killed and several injured in a bomb blast in the Maharashtra powerloom town of Malegaon Sep 29. Besides Pandey, the other 10 arrested inlcude Sadhvi Pragnya Singh Thakur and Lt. Col. Prasad Purohit, a serving Indian Army official.

Sources close to ATS, however, told IANS that an obscene CD was indeed found in a laptop seized from Pandey and that he has confessed he got it made from a video recording featuring him with his female disciples in sexual acts.

ATS claims to have video-recorded Pandey’s interrogation and says it is ready to produce both the CD and the video-taped interrogation before the court.

Sources said, Pandey told the interrogators that he has had sexual relationship with several willing disciples and that he shot the video-films with their knowledge.

Pandey reportedly implored the ATS sleuths to rather hang him than seize his laptops.

Meanwhile, a local court in Nashik Friday extended the magisterial custody of Lt. Col. Prasad Purohit to Dec 24 in a case of procuring an arms license for a friend on the basis of forged documents.

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