13 Nov : The BJP on Thursday accused the Maharashtra government of "framing" charges against Sadhvi Pragya Thakur, the main accused in the Malegaon blast, for garnering minority votes.
"Maharashtra government with centre’s support is framing charges against Sadhvi Pragya Thakur to gain back the minority votes which has eroded away from them," party vice-president Gopinath Munde charged.
Hindu organisations are being purposely dragged into such controversies to malign them, Munde claimed, while warning that it will prove counter-productive for Congress.
The government is doing a "big harm" by publicly naming army personnel allegedly involved in the case and the ATS has "no evidence" to prove the guilt of those arrested, Munde said in New Delhi on Thursday.
"Army should not be involved in the probe unless there are strong evidence of their involvement. ATS does not have any evidence to prove the guilt of the arrested and is doing one narco test after other to dig out stories. Why haven’t the ATS subjected the terrorists arrested for the 2006 Malegaon blasts to narco tests," he charged.
Nine persons, including Sadhvi Pragya Thakur and a serving army officer Lt Col Srikant Prasad Purohit, have been arrested for their alleged involvement in the 29th September Malegaon blast.
Malegaon blasts: Dayanand Pandey arrested in Lucknow
Self-claimed religious leader Dayanand Pandey, who is allegedly involved in the Malegaon blast, was arrested at Lucknow, after questioning by a joint team of Maharashtra Police and central security agencies and will be produced before a Nashik court within three days.
"Dayanand Pandey alias Sudhakar Dwivedi was formally arrested after he was detained by the team of Maharashtra ATS with the help of Uttar Pradesh police in Kanpur district," Additional Director General (Law and Order) Brijlal said.
He was produced on Thursday before magistrate Mukesh Kumar, who gave him transit remand for three days. The Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) team will produce him before a Nashik court by 16th November.
Pandey, head of Sharda Sarvagya Peeth in Jammu, was picked up by the ATS on Wednesday and was quizzed on charges of murder, conspiracy and various sections of the Explosives Act.
The J-K police is also trying to ascertain Pandey’s role in the agitation over the Amarnath land transfer issue. (DD/13.11)
Malegaon probe: Purohit’s laptop might reveal further details
The missing laptop computer of Lt Col Prasad Purohit, a key accused in the Malegaon blast case, has been found and is expected to reveal crucial details about involvement of other persons in the conspiracy.
Police sources said in Mumbai on Thursday.
The computer was initially not found after the detention of Purohit from Panchmarhi in Madhya Pradesh and is suspected to contain details of other members of the right wing group Abhinav Bharat who could have had a role to play in the Malegaon blast.
It is also suspected to contain details of persons who had undergone training in camps organised by Purohit and others and details of the monetary transactions that were carried out by members of the group, the sources said.
However, ATS officials refused to comment on the issue saying it was still too early to reveal any details.
They also refused to comment on where the computer would be taken for forensic analysis.
Authorities at the Kalina Forensic Science Laboratory (FSL) in suburban Santacruz said they had not yet received the computer for forensic analysis.
Ten persons have been arrested so far for their alleged involvement in carrying out a blast in Malegaon on 29th September in which six persons were killed and about 80 injured.
One of the arrested in the Malegaon case, Ajay Rahirkar, had allegedly received funds through ‘hawala channels’ which were then disbursed among others at the behest of Purohit, ATS officials had said.