BJP MP from Bhopal Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur (File Photo/ANI)
BJP MP from Bhopal Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur (File Photo/ANI)

Pragya complains of broken chair, remains standing in court

ANI | Updated: Jun 07, 2019 19:29 IST

Mumbai (Maharastra) [India], Jun 7 (ANI): BJP MP Pragya Singh Thakur, an accused in 2008 Malegaon blast case. created a scene in the special NIA court by remaining standing throughout the proceeding complaining of a lack of proper chair.
She complained that the chair was dirty, small and tilted to one side.
Speaking to ANI, Special NIA Public Prosecutor Avinash Rasal said: "Special NIA Judge Vinod Padlakar repeatedly asked her to sit anywhere she likes but she declined the offer and stood near the window throughout the course of the proceedings."
Thakur also complained of lack of cleanliness in the courtroom and started yelling as soon as the Judge left the chamber at 5:15 pm.
She hollered at the top of her voice accusing the court staff of not giving her a proper chair to sit despite her medical condition.
"If you had called me to the court, you should have at least provided me with a chair to sit. Till I am convicted, I have the right to sit. You can hang me after I am convicted in this case," she said.
Thakur, who had skipped proceedings on June 6 on grounds of ill health, appeared before the court along with two other accused in connection with the 2008 Malegaon blast case today.
NIA Judge Vinod Padlakar questioned Thakur and later directed all the three accused --Thakur, Samir Kulkarni and Sudhakar Diwedi--to return to the court at 2:45 p.m. for signatures marking their presence as per the procedure.
At the court, she could be seen helped by two men to climb the stairs at the entrance.
During the course of hearing, Special NIA Judge Vinod Padlakar asked two questions from all the three accused present in the court.
"Do you know or has your lawyer told you about how many witnesses have been examined by the prosecution till now?" the judge asked.
Thakur replied, "I don't know," while Diwedi answered that so far 116 witnesses have been examined by the prosecution.
The court also asked, "From all the witnesses who have been examined till now, it has transpired that there was a blast on September 29, 2008, in which several people died. What do you have to say?"
Thakur and Diwedi said that they do not know about it while Kulkarni claimed that it is true.
On Thursday, the court issued an arrest warrant against a witness in the case who had signed the panchnama while the damage by the blasts was being ascertained. Since it was a bailable warrant, the witness has to pay Rs. 5,000 as a bail bond.
Thakur had on Tuesday, moved an exemption from appearance plea in connection with the case. She is likely to appear before the court later this week, her lawyer had said.
The court had on Monday directed Thakur and all other accused in the case to appear before it once a week.
Judge Padalkar, while asking Thakur to be present before the court, had referred to a recent Supreme Court order which said hearing in criminal cases against public representatives be expedited.
Besides the Bhopal MP, the other accused are Lt Col Prasad Purohit, Major (retired) Ramesh Upadhyay, Sudhakar Dwivedi, Ajay Rahirkar, Sameer Kulkarni and Sudhakar Chaturvedi.
They have been charged under various sections of the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) and the Indian Penal Code (IPC).
The charges include sections 16 (committing terrorist act) and 18 (conspiring to commit terrorist act) of the UAPA and sections 120 (b) (criminal conspiracy), 302 (murder), 307 (attempt to murder), 324 (voluntarily causing hurt) and 153 (a) (promoting enmity between two religious groups) of the IPC.
The accused have also been charged under relevant sections of the Explosive Substances Act.
On September 29, 2018, six people were killed and a dozen others were injured when a bomb placed on a motorcycle exploded in Maharashtra's Malegaon city. (ANI)