Release me on bail, Pragya Singh urges apex court (Lead)

August 18th, 2011 - 11:31 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Aug 18 (IANS) Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur, the main accused in the 2008 Malegaon bombing which killed six people, told the Supreme Court Thursday that she should be released on bail as her arrest was in breach of the constitutional mandate.

She said she was not informed of the grounds of her arrest and was denied the right to consult and be defended by her lawyer.

Quoting constitutional provisions, she said: “No person who is arrested shall be detained in custody without being informed, as soon as may be, of the grounds for such arrest nor shall he be denied the right to consult, and to be defended by, a legal practitioner of his choice.”

As senior counsel Mahesh Jethmalani argued for grant of bail to Pragaya on the grounds of breach of Article 22 (1) of the constitution, an apex court bench of Justice J.M. Panchal and Justice H.L. Gokhale observed: “If we were to accept this contention, then every accused will move the high court for release under Article 22 (1) of the constitution.”

Jethmalani told the court that Pragya was not involved in Malegaon blasts of 2008 as she had no knowledge of the explosions and was not associated with those involved in it.

On being asked by the court what was her role in the matter, Jethmalani said: “At first I was a suspect. Then I was made an accused. Then a master mind. Now it is Lt. Colonel S.K. Purohit who is the mastermind.”

“I can’t be a brain. I have no money. No knowledge of blasts. I only attended the meeting of Abhinav Bharat,” Jethmalani told the court.

The court was told that Pragya was being projected as the face of ’saffron terror’ whereas the only thing against her was that her motorcycle was used in the commissioning of the crime. He told the court that the said motorcycle was sold by her to Sunil Joshi in 2004.

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