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    Aseemanand denies role in Samjhauta blasts

    Panchkula: Hindu activist Swami Aseemanand on Thursday told a court in Panchkula that he had no role in the 2007 Samjhauta Express train bombing that killed 68 people, mainly Pakistanis.

    Aseemanand told the Panchkula district and sessions judge that he had not made any statement to the National Investigating Agency (NIA) about his supposed involvement in the bomb attack.

    Speaking through his counsel, he accused the NIA of torturing and pressurising him mentally and physically to extort a statement from him.

    The court rejected Assemanand's bail plea on technical grounds, saying the NIA had failed to file a chargesheet in court within 90 days.

    The court extended his custody till the next date of hearing on May 26.

    Aseemanand, a member of Hindu group Abhinav Bharat, was arrested earlier for the 2007 Mecca Masjid bombing in Hyderabad that left 14 people dead.

    The NIA questioned Aseemanand about his role in the Samjhauta Express -- which plies between India and Pakistan -- blast in Diwana village near the city of Panipat, 160 km from here, in Haryana.

    Aseemanand was arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation Nov 19 last year from Haridwar in Uttarakhand for his alleged role in the Mecca Masjid blast.