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Malegaon: Chaturvedi's remand plea rejected

January 06, 2009 18:43 IST

All the 11 accused in Malegaon blast case, including Sadhvi Pragya [Images] Singh Thakur and Lt Col Prasad Purohit, were today remanded to judicial custody till January 20 by a special MCOCA court.

The prosecution had sought police custody of one of the accused Sudhakar Chaturvedi on the grounds that he was actively involved in right wing group Abhinav Bharat. 

 According to the remand application, the samples of explosive material recovered from Chaturvedi's house matched with those recovered from co-accused and self proclaimed religious leader Dayanand Pandey's house.

"Investigations have revealed that wanted accused Ramji Kalsangra had stayed at Chaturvedi's house prior to the blast," special public prosecutor Rohini Salian said. 

 Salian said the statements of two witnesses have revealed that Chaturvedi was in constant touch with Purohit and had taken part in several meetings in which the blast conspiracy was allegedly hatched.

Chaturvedi's lawyer Avinash Bhide, however, opposed police custody arguing that Chaturvedi was already in police custody for 14 days and the accused apprehends physical and mental torture if sent to police custody again.

"The police want his (Chaturvedi) custody only to forcibly take a false confession from him. Ealier also, he was produced before a magistrate to record his confession but he refused to give one," Bhide argued.

Not accepting the prosecution's arguements, special MCOCA judge Y D Shinde remanded all the accused to judicial custody till January 20. 

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