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Samjhauta Express accused remanded in NIA custody

December 20, 2012 21:35 IST

Dhan Singh, a prime suspect in the 2007 Samjhauta Express blast case, was on Thursday remanded in the custody of National Investigation Agency till December 28 in the 2008 Malegaon blast case by the special National Investigation Agency court in Mumbai.

The NIA told the court that it recently arrested Rajender Chaudhary in Samjhauta case, and he had confessed that he and Singh were involved in Malegaon and other blasts along with absconding accused Ramchandra Kalasangraha and Sandeep Dange.

"Chaudhary said that Dhansing was instrumental in transporting the motorcycle of Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur for using it in Malaegaon blast," Special Public Prosecutor Rohini Salian said. Singh was closely associated with Kalasangraha and Dange, and they appeared to have aided each other in the commission of 2008 Malegaon blast and other terrorist acts, she said.

Salian sought Singh's custody for the NIA, saying he needs to be interrogated to unearth facts about procurement of explosives, acquiring of expertise, logistics, etc.

But Singh's lawyer, advocate J P Mishra argued that the facts emerging now were contrary to the facts stated by the NIA after the interrogation of Swami Aseemanand.

Earlier, Singh told the special judge Y D Shinde that he had been assaulted by the NIA officers, and he was scared. He also alleged that his family was being harassed by the NIA.

When the judge asked if he had a lawyer, he said he didn't, nor did he want one from the legal aid panel. But when advocate Mishra appeared for him, Singh refused to sign the `vakalatnama', saying he had no money to pay lawyer's fee and he should be given a lawyer from the aid panel.

His relatives finally persuaded him to accept Advocate Mishra. There was a dramatic scene during the proceedings when Singh's mother said to him, "You be happy, you did not do anything, let the world allege anything." She was then asked by the officers present to leave.

So far, 12 persons, including Sadhvi Pragya and and Lt Col Prasad Purohit, have been arrested for the blast at Malegaon on September 29, 2008 which killed six persons and injured 100 others.  

PTI