The court would hear arguments on the National Investigation Agency plea in a day.
Mumbai: Some of the accused in the 2008 Malegaon bomb blast case, including Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur, on Monday filed their reply on the application filed by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) supporting the plea that the trial of this case should be conducted in-camera to safeguard the witnesses in addition to the national security issue as the matter is sensitive. The court would hear arguments on the National Investigation Agency plea in a day.
On Monday Sadhvi Pragya, Col Prasad Purohit and retired Major Ramesh Upadhyay filed their reply supporting in-camera trial. While Nisar Ahmed, who lost his son in the blast, filed a reply opposing the request, another accused, Sameer Kulkarni, had already informed the judge that he is not in favour of in-camera trial.
Sadhvi Pragya in her reply said that the accused in the case have been subjected to media trial. She contended that if the identity and security of the eyewitnesses is not secured and they are persistently exposed to the material published by the media, in terms of proceedings conducted before this court, it influences the witnesses.
“Considering that the case of the prosecution that the present matter conceives conflicting claim/content of communities upon their religion, the proceedings of the matter and any decision there to in harmony violates response of public at large, which is apprehending threat to communal harmony, national security and public at large,” read her reply supporting NIA’s plea for an in-camera trial.
Meanwhile, Purohit in his reply said that in-camera trial is necessary on many grounds including that some of the witnesses have expressed apprehensions about threat to their life at the hands of then ATS officers.
He also contended that for maintaining harmony in the society it is necessary to conduct in-camera proceedings.