Posted by: informer | November 15, 2008

Shiv Sena ready to help blast accused

New Delhi: The Shiv Sena has come out in support of the Malegaon blast accused. The editor of the party mouthpiece Saamna, Sanjay Raut, told CNN-IBN that the Sena is ready to provide legal aide to the accused, including sadhvi (female saint) Pragya Singh Thakur.

“If Dawood Ibrahim’s brother was represented by eminent lawyers like Majeed Memon, shouldn’t sadhvi Pragya, Ramesh Upadhyay and Sameer Kulkarni be represented by somebody?” says an editorial in Saamna

“The government does not save Hindus from terrorists, and if Hindus defend themselves, they are maligned,” it says.

The Mumbai Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) has arrested Pragya Singh Thakur in the September 29 Malegaon bomb blast case in which five people were killed.

The ATS is also questioning a serving Army officer. Bhonsala Military School Principal Colonel (Retd) SS Raikar has been detained for questioning in the Malegaon blast case by Mumbai Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS).

ATS is also investigating the role of serving Indian Army officer Lieutenant Colonel Prasad Purohit in the blast case and had also detained two former officers – retired Major Ramesh Upadhyay and retired Colonel SS Raikar.

Investigators claim they have decoded SMSs exchanged between Lt Col Purohit and retired Major Ramesh Upadhyay.

Retired Colonel Raikar is the Commandant of Bhonsala Military School, in Nashik. The ATS is also investigating the role of school in the case.

The Army is understandably concerned as it is an unprecedented incident. It is the first time since independence that a serving Army officer is being questioned in connection with a terror act.

However, General Secretary of Bhonsala Military School Divakar Kulkarni denied that the institution was involved in any terror related activity.

“The school has been imparting military training for nearly 70 year till date not a single students of the school has been found involved in any militant or anti-social activities. We have a very clean background. We have no connection with Abhinav Bharat and we had only given them permission to conduct a meeting inside our school premises,” Kulkarni said.

He also denied that the Malegaon bomb blast conspiracy was hatched in the school. “Let the investigation take place and everything will be clear,” Kulkarni said and added that the school had no connection with sadhvi Pragya.

Col (retd) Raikar’s wife also denied that her husband was involved with any terror group.


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