Bombay HC rejects bail of 2008 Malegaon blast accused

BlastCourt said the evidence on record shows that accused Praveen Takalki was a member of an organised crime syndicate which was involved in unlawful activity of exploding bombs in religious places. (Reuters)

Observing that there was prima facie material against the accused for his complicity in the crime, the Bombay High Court has rejected the bail plea of Praveen Takalki, accused in the 2008 Malegaon bomb blast case.

Refusing to grant bail to the accused on December 18, a bench headed by Justice P V Hardas said the evidence on record shows that he was a member of an organised crime syndicate which was involved in unlawful activity of exploding bombs in religious places, predominately in Muslim areas.

The judges noted that confession given by the accused and corroboration by witnesses revealed that the applicant had knowledge of the acts of other accused and that he conspired with them to cause the offences with which he is charged.

"Considering the evidence, we are of the opinion that prima facie there is material to show the complicity of the appellant/accused in the criminal conspiracy in the case," the bench observed.

Earlier, a Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) court had rejected the bail of the accused. Being aggrieved, Praveen filed an appeal in the High Court which too turned down his plea for liberty.

Going through the order of the special court, the High Court bench noted that it did not find any infirmity warranting interference.

"In the light of the material on record and the bar under Section 21(4) of the MCOCA, we are firmly of the opinion, that this is not a fit case to grant bail. Accordingly, we reject the appeal," said the bench.

However, the judges said their observations on prima facie involvement of the accused should not be construed as recording a finding of guilt against him. These are only for the purpose of deciding the bail and hence the trial judge should not be influenced by these remarks, the bench noted.

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