Mumbai: The NIA court of Mumbai today rejected the petition seeking a stay on the election of Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur. The petitioner was a man whose son was killed in the 2008 Malegaon blast.
The sadhvi is an accused in the Malegaon bombing case and is currently out on bail. She is contesting the Lok Sabha election from Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, on a BJP ticket.
Why the petition was dismissed
Nisar Syed, who lost his son in the Malegaon blast, had approached the court last week demanding that Thakur be stopped from contesting in this election. In his petition, he said that a petition seeking the cancellation of the bail order of Thakur was pending in the Supreme Court.
NIA Special Judge VS Padalkar dismissed the petition saying that his lawyer knew well that this was not a proper forum (for the petition). The judge said this was not the court that had granted the bail and that the petitioner had approached the wrong forum for his purpose.
Misleading argument against sadhvi
The sadhvi‘s lawyer JP Mishra said in the court that she was in the election to make the point that there was no such thing as “Hindu terrorism” in the country. Sadhvi is contesting for the country and a certain ideology, the lawyer said.
This was an echo of the comment former Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shviraj Singh Chouhan had made on Tuesday in a public meeting.
SS Chouhan, BJP in Bhopal: You (Congress) committed 3 crimes. You defamed saffron, you meted out inhumane torture to a daughter of India, you misused laws. So I say this with full responsibility that yes BJP fielded Sadhvi Pragya against Digvijaya Singh,we're proud of her. (23.4) pic.twitter.com/jnTu9ERNPP
— ANI (@ANI) April 23, 2019
Mishra said it would be misleading to infer that the sadhvi had got bail merely on the basis of her poor health. He said the sadhvi got bail on merit. Sadhvi’s health is fine now although a doctor now monitors her health constantly, the lawyer informed the court.
However, the court told Mishra he was crossing his limits by getting carried away by emotions. On this, the lawyer said, “I am suffering, I am sad; so I am getting emotional.”
Earlier, the lawyer of the petitioner had argued that their issue was not that the defendant was ill or undergoing treatment. The lawyer of the plaintiff said that the sadhvi was “lying” before the court. The petitioner has lost his son, he wants justice, the lawyer urged. He said that the petitioner knew well that the sadhvi was well now, as she has submitted to the court in her reply and also as seen on TV where she is walking around and campaigning. The petitioner said this was not about the publicity.
The petitioner’s lawyer claimed further that his client had no political motive and that he had nothing to do with politics as alleged by Pragya Singh Thakur in her reply.
But then, the petitioner’s lawyer talked about the condition of Pragya Thakur at the time when she was granted the bail. He alleged that she had feigned ill-health so that she did not have to attend the court every day.
During the hearing, the judge rebuked the petitioner’s lawyer for not being a signatory to the petition. The court wanted to know whether this was a joke with the court.
The judge also why the petitioner did not register his objection when Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur was being granted bail. The court took the defendant’s lawyer to task too for the missing signatures in his client’s reply.