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Sadhvi Pragya Says Plea by Malegaon Blast Victim's Father 'Politically Motivated’, NIA Passes Buck to EC

The father of one of the victims of the Malegaon blast had moved the court last week, urging it to bar Thakur from contesting elections since the trial is in progress.

Radhika Ramaswamy | CNN-News18

Updated:April 23, 2019, 3:43 PM IST
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Sadhvi Pragya Says Plea by Malegaon Blast Victim's Father 'Politically Motivated’, NIA Passes Buck to EC
Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur during a roadshow at an event in Surat on Tuesday. (Image: PTI)

Mumbai: Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur, the BJP’s Bhopal candidate and a prime accused in the 2008 Malegaon blast case, has said the plea seeking a ban on her contesting elections is “frivolous” and “politically motivated”.

The father of one of the victims of the Malegaon blast had moved the court last week, urging it to bar Thakur from contesting polls since the trial is in progress.

The application said Thakur had not been attending court hearings citing ill health but was campaigning for elections after being granted bail on health grounds. The court had asked both Thakur and the National Investigation Agency (NIA) to file replies.

Seeking dismissal of the application with exemplary cost for the applicant’s ‘malicious and irresponsible behaviour’, Thakur on Tuesday said: “It is evident that the applicant has deliberately chosen the forum of this court to ventilate misconceived and frivolous application for want of publicity and for extraneous reasons with political agenda.”

It added that the application was aimed at causing harm, prejudice and injury to Thakur. The six-page reply said the accused was suffering from breast cancer and undergoing treatment. “It is important to note that bail was granted by the high court not only on health grounds but on the grounds that there was no prima facie case against her,” the reply said.

The NIA, which has been investigating the case, in its reply told the court that the issue did not fall under its jurisdiction and therefore no comment could be offered on the plea.

The agency, in its four-page reply, distanced itself from the matter and stated, “The matter is related to elections and Election Commission. NIA has no jurisdiction to say anything on this matter because the matter of contesting elections is not related to the case. It is to be decided by the Election Commission only, hence no comment offered.”

It also went on to provide the backgrounder of the case and reiterated the clean chit it had given to Thakur while filing its charge sheet.

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| Edited by: Apoorva Misra
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