NIA Court Seeks Sadhvi Pragya's Reply After Plea by Malegaon Blast Victim's Father
This was Thakur's first appearance in court since she was elected from the Bhopal seat in the recently concluded Lok Sabha elections.

New Delhi: In a significant development, the NIA Court in Mumbai has sought a reply from Malegaon blast accused Sadhvi Pragya Thakur after a victim’s father moved the court against her contesting in the Lok Sabha elections 2019. The Bharatiya Janata Party has fielded Thakur from Bhopal to take on Congress stalwart Digvijaya Singh.

Nisar Ahmed Sayyed Bilal, the father of one of the victims killed in the 2008 Malegaon blasts, has filed an application in the NIA Court. Currently, the case against Thakur and other accused are being heard at the Mumbai court.

Bilal, in his application, said that Thakur was granted conditional bail on medical grounds by the Bombay High Court in 2017. He claimed that one of the conditions imposed was Thakur’s presence during the hearings of the case. However, Bilal claimed that she had been repeatedly flouting on the pretext of ill health due to ‘Breast Cancer’, on the other hand unabashedly attending public events.

The statement said, “She is not attending the hearing of this court on the pretext that she is unwell and she is a “Breast Cancer Patient” but on the contrary she has been seen participating in various programs and giving objectionable & instigating speeches since her release from Jail.”

“That intervener would further submit that, A-1 got bail on health ground but clearly healthy enough to fight elections in the crippling summer heat which means she has misguided the Hon’ble Court,” Bilal’s statement further read.

Further, Bilal stated that though the NIA gave Thakur a clean chit, the Court has not absolved her in the matter. It also pointed out that an appeal had been filed in the Supreme Court against the Bombay High Court’s decision to grant her a bail.

Thakur is one of the accused in the 2008 Malegaon blasts that claimed the lives of six people and injured over 100 others in Maharashatra.

The Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad arrested Thakur and others in the case, alleging that they were part of a Hindu extremist group which carried out the blast.

The NIA later gave Thakur a clean chit, but the court did not discharge Thakur.

It dropped charges against her under the stringent Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act, but she is still facing trial under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act and Indian Penal Code sections.