Posts Tagged 'purohit'

Sheela Bhatt in an exclusive chat with Indresh kumar

Part I

http://www.rediff.com/news/slide-show/slide-show-1-terror-stained-indresh-kumar-speaks-out/20110113.htm

Sheela Bhatt in an exclusive chat with Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangha leader Indresh Kumar, tries to get to know the man who is under the national scanner for serious, but, so far unsubstantiated, allegations of mentoring a group of terrorists.
There cannot be more horrifying crimes than to kill innocent people through bomb blasts.
Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh’s National Executive’s member Indresh Kumar, 62, has been grilled by the Central Bureau of Investigation in connection with bomb blasts in Malegaon, Ajmer, Hyderabad and the Samjhauta Express.
The questioning of RSS’s top functionary has created crisis of credibility for the sangh parivar.
It’s no less sensational that around a dozen Hindu accused of these re-investigated blasts cases once belonged to the RSS or they were closely linked with it.
Even RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat admitted it recently in Surat, when he said, “Of the majority of the people whom the government has accused, a few have left voluntarily and a few (have been) told by the sangh: ‘this extremism will not work here, so you go away’.”
Indresh Kumar is not an accused yet but the repeated mention of his name in the recently leaked confession of accused Swami Aseemanand has put the entire sangh parivar on the defensive.
However, the agencies investigating cases of terrorism face a bigger crisis of credibility than the so-called followers of the ‘saffron’ ideology. The crimes confessed by Aseemanand have been already confessed before by Safdar Nagori, a Students Islamic Movement of India activist, in 2008.
The RSS and the Bharatiya Janata Party’s main defence is that investigative agencies are doing the dirty work of the Congress party. At same time, neither the BJP nor the RSS leadership deny in off the record conversations that a small group of radical Hindus may have been involved in “one or two blasts”.
At the same time, they say the fringe elements, mainly consisting of former pracharaks of the RSS, have withered away or lost destructive capacity after arrests of some key people and the December 2007 murder of Sunil Joshi, main accused of these terror -related cases.

The RSS and BJP leadership are vociferously asking investigative agencies to zero in on these fringe elements who, they claim, are also against leadership of the BJP and the RSS.
One of India’s senior most officers handling security matters told rediff.com that, “Those who have been arrested are also fighting amongst themselves. They are incoherent.”

The first group that was arrested in Malegaon case that included Sadhvi Pragnya Singh Thakur had alleged that Bhagwat and Indresh Kumar were receiving money from Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence.
In fact, BJP chief Nitin Gadkari has been claiming since the last 18 months how slain Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad chief Hemant Karkare had briefed him about the threats faced by Bhagwat and Indresh Kumar from these Hindutva fringe elements.
The same information has been acknowledged by Congress leader Digvijay Singh in his interview to Frontline magazine in July-August, 2010.
Most of the arrested right-wing accused are bad-mouthing the BJP leadership’s pro-power politics and the RSS’s soft approach on nationalist issues, particularly their softening approach to issues related to China and Pakistan.
In fact, a close reading of Assemanand’s confession in court under section 164 suggests that most of the significant allegations made will be very difficult to sustain with corroborative proof because the main accused Sunil Joshi is no more.
Since Aseemanand’s confession was leaked out prematurely some experts believed that the agency has no hope to getting a dramatic breakthrough in the investigation so interested parties are using it for political purposes.
One doesn’t know if the bigger design or real mastermind behind the so-called saffron terrorism will come to light or not. Assemanand’s confession may prove useful for a limited legal purpose depending on the court’s assessment in the long run.
In fact, it’s too smartly drafted. It levels serious charges but these will be difficult to prove without Joshi.
The sangh parivar alleges that the tremendous pressure the beleaguered United Progressive Alliance government is facing is forcing it to target them.
They claim that government is raking up issue of ‘saffron terrorism’ to divert attention from charges of corruption and price rise. While Congressmen see the unfolding investigation as the proof of RSS’s ‘communal agenda’ against the minorities which can lead to civil war-like situation if not fought at an ideological level.
The RSS and the BJP are trying hard to retain their credibility regarding their stand vis-a-vis the larger issue of terrorism. Therefore, both are treading carefully on the issue and have unambiguously declared that radicals have no place in their parivar. Until the investigation reaches its logical conclusion one would not know the larger impact on the support base of sangh parivar.
Rediff.com spoke to Indresh Kumar, the man facing the needle of suspicion, to know his side of story.
Kumar, an RSS leader with 40 years of organisational experience is, obviously, under tremendous pressure. He tried to avoid crucial questions related to the case but in an exclusive conversation, he talked about himself, his worldview and activities.
What is important here is that in the RSS set-up he is not insignificant. It takes years of hard work to reach national executive of RSS. He is the man who is revered by even BJP’s leaders and workers.
When BJP chief Gadkari meets Indresh Kumar he invariably touches his feet.
We would like to know about you a little bit. Where did you study and how did you join the RSS?
I was born on February 18, 1949, in Kaithal, Haryana. My father was a businessman. Since childhood I used to visit the RSS shakha along with my father. I got an engineering degree from Punjab University. I used to participate in RSS activities and in 1970 I became a pracharak.
What was your motivation to join the RSS?
Somewhere in my mind a thought was instilled by my family, society and the RSS that we should do something for society and our country. The basic parameter of doing that was that one should rise above caste, creed, sect and religion.
Caste may remain but casteism is wrong. The sects may continue but sectarianism should be unacceptable. It’s very wrong to believe in untouchability.
Our aim should be that society should be united and it should carry strong passion of nationalism. Our unity doesn’t mean that your and mine identity will vanish. It’s a crime to indulge in identity-based politics and quarrel. This was the basic thought.
Some call this thought the idea of ‘Hindu unity’ some label it ‘cultural nationalism’. Some call it the idea for Indian unity. I don’t use the word Indian. The origin of word India is not old. The word came about some two-three centuries back. Any literature, which is 500 years old, won’t find the word India in it.
Therefore, I believe, it’s a criminal thought to call Bharat and Bhartiya as India and Indians. I am saying this because to cut off our past is a kind of crime. I always use people, never India. In any language Bharat should be Bharat. You may call it Hindustan. In our ancient texts you will find mention of Bharat.
Which was your first job?
I never had a job. I became a full time worker of RSS. I was busy in organisation in New Delhi. I only wanted to do something for our country.
In the last 40 years, like many of us, I performed the RSS’s main job of managing shakhas and building human resources. When, under Indira Gandhi’s leadership, the Congress murdered democracy I worked hard to fight it along with stalwarts of our organisation. I believe, I played a role in re-establishing democracy in our country at that time. I was underground and was listed amongst the wanted people.
I used to work a lot with students in New Delhi. In 1979, New Delhi was devastated by floods. I had led the entire relief operation of the RSS.
My first big assignment was to rehabilitate lakhs of Kashmiri pundits and a few Kashmiri Muslims in different parts of India. As you know, approximately 55,000 families have been displaced from Kashmir. We worked with the Jammu and Kashmir Sahayta Samiti to re-settle around 4 lakh Kashmiris.
Which were your other major assignments?
When I went to Ladakh, I started a Hindu-Buddha dialogue around 1986/87. The idea was to establish closeness with Himalaya-based Buddhists. We wanted to join and work together. At that time I came in close touch with the respected Dalai Lama and supported the Tibet movement. Tibet was never a part and parcel of China.
That’s why Chinese and those supporters of China in India used to remain upset with me. They used to tell me that Tibet is a dead issue and I was trying to inject oxygen into it.
Do you still believe in this idea? As you know, India has accepted that Tibet is a part of China.
I still believe in it. Just because the Indian government is supporting doesn’t mean that I should support it, too. You may be supporting China. It’s unfortunate. To support China’s stand on Tibet is against humanity, it’s dishonesty with the Dalai Lama and it’s deception with the people of Tibet.
There are no documents to prove that Tibet was part and parcel of China. Tibet is not shown as part of China in the books of China which are 200 years old.
Today’s publications do claim it but none of old books show Tibet as a part of China. When Atalji (former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee) went to China, when Prime Minister Manmohan Singh went to China I had written to them that Bharat has made a mistake in accepting Tibet as a part of China and Bharat should correct the mistake.
These are not my views. The RSS has passed a resolution to this effect. The RSS’s second chief Guru Golwalkarji had said at that time that Bharat is making a big mistake in accepting Tibet as a part of China. We are cheating history and truth, both.
Who was your ideal when you were young?
I never had one. I was inspired by Sangh. I am a believer of God.
How do you want to be recognised?
I am Hindu and Bhartiya. I think Hindu and Bhartiya, the two words have identical meaning (samanarthi). There is no difference between the two.
You were also involved in friendship between Hindus and Muslims, right?
Since beginning I have believed that all of us are one and we have emerged from one Bhagwan (God), from one earth and we belong to one nation. We have the same ancestors.
In Bharat, 99 percent Muslims and Christians are converted from Hinduism. Meaning our roots are same and we can’t be parted. When we can’t be parted then it’s necessary that we get united, remain united. Our politicians want to see us divided.
We conducted a dialogue with the Muslims. In 2002, they started an institution. The umbrella organisation is called Muslim Rashtriya Manch. It’s for the Muslims, by the Muslims. I am an inspiration for them. They are gentlemen and quite active people. The RSS told me to conduct such dialogue.
How did you conduct that dialogue?
I met (noted Islamic scholar) Maulana Wahiduddin Khan, Maulana Ilyasi of the All Indian Imams Organisation. I have met head of Ajmer Sharief and even chief of the Deoband seminary. I have met leaders belonging to Jamait Ulema-e Hind.
I have met quite a lot ordinary Muslims. I think they have not got benefits of education. They have been little bit cut off from wave of patriotism (vatanprasati ke daur se thode se kate rahe hai).
What do you mean by that?
Like to sing songs of people who have sacrificed lives for our country. Like celebrating anniversaries of our national heroes. Our politicians have taught them to hate Hindus, to keep away from Hindus. Leaders have used them for political purposes. While talking to ordinary Muslims I came to know their problems.
I saw that politicians have given them the wrong outlook to see things. Like these days it’s believed that if you pardon terrorists then Muslims will be happy. Muslims are exasperated by this.
If government pardons Afzal Guru or Ajmal Kasab then we are told Muslims would be happy. We are told that if Digvijay Singh visits the home of terrorists then Muslims would be happy. The Muslim community is very upset about this perception.
You are saying you have met chief of the Ajmer dargah and now Assemanand confession contains the allegation that you mentored and financed the bombing in Ajmer. What do you think of it?
What do you think of it? How would you find it?

PART II
http://www.rediff.com/news/slide-show/slide-show-1-indresh-kumar-needle-of-suspicion-on-govt-sheela-bhatt/20110114.htm
What do you want to say about the serious charges levelled against you?
I want to tell you a few important things about it. The blasts that you are talking about are the Samjhauta Express, Mecca Masjid (Hyderabad), Ajmer and Malegaon. Four government agencies have fixed up these cases.
After blasts on the Samjhauta Express and the Mecca Masjid, they arrested many Students Islamic Movement of India activists and jailed them. Some of them had to undergo the narco test and the reports are before them (the investigators). Many accused have confessed that they were involved in these blasts. The home ministry, through the ministry of external affairs, has provided some evidence of it to Pakistan.
Long ago, the government has said that elements from Pakistan were behind some of these blasts. US investigating agencies have also said that the Lashkar-e-Tayiba and the Harkat ul Jihad-e Islami have been involved in some of the blasts in India. These organisations have been outlawed — on the basis of evidence.
In the Malegaon investigation, Colonel Shrikant Purohit and Dayanand Pande have been arrested. Purohit is a former Indian Army man. Some people like Purohit and Pande did the networking. In that network (extremist Hindu organisation) Abhinav Bharat, some Hindus and some Muslims maybe there. I don’t know who all may be involved. But these people have accepted that they are guilty.
The government didn’t complete the investigation of these four people who have been arrested in the Malegaon case. The government did the networking through Pande and Colonel Purohit. Some Hindus who might have been in the RSS at some point of time were caught. The government discontinued the investigation of Purohit and Pande. Instead, the government has taken up new investigation.
That’s why I am saying from day one that under a political conspiracy, some investigation agency officers are being misused. With their help, a story is being spun. The moot question is why has government discontinued the investigation of the Malegaon case in which Purohit and Pande are arrested? They are saying we could not find anything more.
They haven’t discontinued the investigation. When that investigation was on, they found out about Sunil Joshi.
What I am saying now is that you have made public the confession (of Aseemanand). Let all investigation of all the cases be published. You know what happened to the investigation of the Bofors (howitzer gun deal kickbacks) case and the Arushi (Talwar murder) case. The CBI is captive of the ruling party. They are investigating to help political rivalry. They are not going after the truth.
My first question is, why are they not following up the investigation of the four cases? Why are things being done outside the purview of the investigations? Two, my question is, was somewhere the government itself not doing all these things?
Bomb blasts?
Are the government’s agencies doing all these things?
Why would the government do such things? What is their benefit?
The government indulges in lots of businesses. How are these scams happening? I demand the investigation of the government itself! In the first round, the government arrested Muslims and harassed them. Now, they have arrested Hindus and will harass them. The government will divide and rule. One should look if government is into this business.
Today, as per new revelations, new accused are arrested long after many innocents Muslims were arrested. Pakistan is being given a clean chit and the government has even fooled the entire country, and US investigating agencies. How can you say that this government was wrong then and is right today? If you are an advocate of the government, then there is no need to converse with you.
My contention is that Pragnya knew Sunil Joshi who knew Aseemanand. You knew Aseemanand well. That’s how the charge against you cropped up.

I am saying that the network of all these characters has been accepted by the military intelligence’s Colonel Purohit. Why has that fact been taken out of the investigation? That’s why I am asking, were all these (blasts) done by the government? Is it just because I am acquainted to them they are diverting the case towards me? So far, nobody has said that I am involved in any action. They are known to me, that’s the only allegation. Even you know thousands of people. Are you guilty for being known to somebody?

Did you know Aseemanand?

The question is not if I knew him or didn’t. You knew him, so are you guilty? You note it down that Sheela Bhatt knew Aseemanand, so she is also a terrorist. Will you write this? Why not? Aseemanand was known to thousands of people.

But four of the accused, Lokesh Sharma, Bharat Riteshwar and two others, have named you.

My name can be mentioned by 40, 400 or 400,000 people. I am asking, who did the networking of all these people? Has it been done by the government? It’s very necessary to investigate who Colonel Purohit is. Who is Dayanand Pande? Did these people do the networking in connivance with the government? This aspect must be investigated. You will know the truth when this investigation is done.

Did you share your views on the matter with the CBI?

Some facts have come out and some will come out slowly. I am saying that the needle of suspicion points to the government. Wikileaks have proved it, too. While talking to a foreign diplomat, Rahul Gandhi spoke about it. I believe, under the conspiracy, they would bring the result. Digvijay Singh has also acknowledged that he was in touch with the officers of the investigating agency in Maharashtra. Let this be investigated. How can you investigate what suits you and not investigate what doesn’t suit you?

Aseemanand has spoken in front of a magistrate. It cannot be ignored.

This is happening everyday. People give confessions before a magistrate and retract those confessions (in court). Who says that Aseemanand’s confession is full and final? Who got it done, this confession? I am asking them to build up the case in the court of law.

Did you know Sunil Joshi?

What I am saying is that people are trying to prove that acquaintance is enough to prove guilt. You will also do the same job. I want to ask, again and again, who is behind the networking of these boys? Let us make all investigation public. File the charge-sheet. Put up evidence in court, I will respond. If you are leaking the confession like this before going to court, what’s your intention? This only means that under your conspiracy you want to damage some people and some institution. Let us go to court.

That day will come, too.

Why make anybody a convict before that?

That has been happening all the time with Muslims.

Precisely. I am also saying same thing. For first few years, this government fooled Hindustan by trapping Muslims. Now, they have woven a new story to fool Hindustan again. It’s necessary that the entire country should question the government’s investigation. This government is fraud — it is misusing the investigating agencies.

I have one basic question

You don’t have any basic questions. I have basic questions. I have already given you the basic question.

Do you confirm that the RSS doesn’t believe in violence?

The RSS school of thought never believed in violence, nor does it believe in it now. I will give you an example. When the charge of Mahatma Gandhi’s assassination was levelled against the RSS, we fought the charge with satyagraha (peaceful agitation). When the RSS was banned for two years in 1948-1949, not even one violent incident occurred.

Critics say your ideology contains a strand of violence.

This allegation is politically motivated. I will ask you a direct question. Is the Congress party violent or non-violent?

You are talking about the allegations of the 1984 (anti-Sikh) riots.

Is that allegations or is there truth in it? Who was the mentor of the 1984 violence? Rajiv Gandhi? He gave that statement (‘When a big tree falls, the earth is bound to shake’). After that, Congress party leaders indulged in violence. On basis of that logic, is Rajiv Gandhi violent or a Bharat Ratna? What is your opinion?

When your name cropped up

You are asking questions on the basis of what the Congress party government has fed you.

There is one contradiction in this investigation of terror-related cases. Hindus arrested in the Malegaon case say they wanted to kill you. Why did they want to kill you?

It’s a delectable story. This government told us that they wanted to kill us. Now, this government is saying that we are killing people. The government told us that this group is against me. Now, the government is saying I got work done through them. I am repeating: The government is openly doing fraud and playing politics. It should be investigated. I demand the investigation of the investigative agencies.

There is a belief that when bomb blasts were taking place all over India, some section of radical Hindus got disturbed so they may have carried out blasts to counter Pakistan’s attempts in India. It was done to scare them and to send a message.

Who was not disturbed by terrorism in India? Entire Bharat felt (strongly) about it. Were you not disturbed? I am also a citizen of this country. Don’t become the tool of the political conspiracy.

Assemanand’s confession has legal value. In this country, the rule of law prevails. So why are you dismissing it? Your telephone number was found in Sunil Joshi’s diary.

If this country is conducting its affairs on the basis of law, then one confession of Safdar Nagori was prepared, na? Now, under the same law, the investigating agency has prepared a second confession.

This just a logical argument. Even the agency can make a mistake.

Why can’t the second confession be a mistake of the agency, then?

Yes. That is an issue related to the credibility of the investigating agency. But that doesn’t mean that details of second confession are totally rubbish.

Asking questions on the basis of something that is false is a bigger mistake. Let us prove which confession is correct, then ask questions.

Are you perturbed?

Not at all. This case is totally untrue. Totally fabricated.

Is it a matter of embarrassment?

It’s a shame for those who are doing this, honestly. And, it’s a shame for those who are asking me this question. Let us sit on judgment of your history sheet and mine. My patriotism and my social service will be above all those who are asking me these questions. Why should I feel shame?

The common Indian carries the wisdom that it’s prudent for Hindus and Muslims to live harmoniously. That it is good for this country. Do you believe in this theory or not?

May I tell you one thing? Give me any other name other than Indreshji who is a symbol of love between Hindus and Muslims in entire India. I am trapped because I was conducting a dialogue with Muslims. Give me one name in the Congress party who is working for Hindu-Muslim unity. This is kaliyug. Patriotic people are facing the dirt and anti-nationals are being protected

You may have to go to jail. Assemanand’s confession, Lokesh Sharma’s statement and Sunil Joshi’s diary mention you.

Bhagat Singh, (Mahatma) Gandhi and (Sardar Vallabhbhai) Patel also went to jail. Were they criminals?

What will happen to this case?

If the government and the investigative agency have guts then let them proceed with the case in court. Let the court remain open for public.

Are Bhagwatji and the RSS with you?

What a crude question! We were one, we are one. No problem!

In the last one year, you are not talking about terror cases; you are only talking about the Congress party’s conspiracy. Why is it so?

It’s not like that. There is one conspiracy and you want to make me part of it. Who are you to blame my character? Why should I answer? Can you ask anybody anytime that you are a rapist so answer? How will you feel? Even I can write tomorrow that you came to see me to torture me. How will you stop me?

There are so many RSS national executive members. Why are you being targeted?

People say… because I was working for Hindu-Muslim unity. They must have found me a threat for their politics. It’s possible that they didn’t like that I have worked in Nepal amongst Maoists. In Kashmir, I alienated separatists by conducting dialogue with people. The politics of jealousy has become dangerous. Instead of welcoming my steps, some leaders are opposing it.

Have you met the king of Nepal?

I have told you enough.

Do you believe that no Hindus have done any blasts?

Again? Why are you talking about Hindus and Muslims? I am saying that the fraud of government and crime of investigating agency is before us. When it will be investigated you will find the truth.

I was beaten day and night, my chastity was questioned. I wanted to commit suicide..- Prajna Singh Thakur


http://www.dailypioneer.com/135265/%E2%80%98I-was-beaten-day-and-night-my-chastity-was-questioned-I-wanted-to-commit-suicide.html

NASIK
C.R. NO. I – 130/08
(RE-NUMBERED AS C.R. No. 1 – 18/08 at ATS)

State of Maharashtra: Complainant

Thru’ ATS
V/s.

Sadhwi Pragyan Singh Thakur & Ors: Accused

AFFIDAVIT

I, Sadhwi Pragyan Chandrapal Singh Thakur, Age 38 years, Occupation — Nil, residing at 7, Ganga Sagar Apartment, Katodara Road, Surat, Gujarat State do hereby state on solemn affirmation as under:

1. I say that I am a resident of Madhya Pradesh. My parents live in Surat, Gujarat where they shifted residence a couple of years ago. I say that for some years now, I found myself becoming increasingly detached from the material world and correspondingly found tremendous comfort and solace in Spiritualism. Accordingly I decided to renounce the material world and become a Sanyasin. On 30.1.2007, after performing the appropriate Hindu Religious rites and prayers I became a Sadhwi. I say that ever since then, I have been residing in a ashram at Jabalpur, Madhya Pradesh. My life at the Ashram almost exclusively consisted of prayers, meditation, yoga and the reading of spiritual texts. At the ashram I did not watch TV channels and had practically no access to newspapers.

2. I say that apart from my activities at the ashram, I travelled chiefly around North India for the purpose of religious discourses and sermons. In connection with these latter activities, between 23.9.2008 and 4.10.2008, I was in Indore where I stayed at the residence of one Annaji who is my disciple. In the evening of 4th October, 2008, I returned to my ashram in Jabalpur.

3. I say that on 7.10.2008, when I was at Jabalpur Ashram, I received a call from a police officer from the ATS, Maharashtra, called Mr Sawant, who wanted to know about my LML Freedom vehicle. However, I told him I had sold it long back and not concerned with it. However, he insisted me to come down to Surat as he wanted to question me at length about it. I was reluctant to go to Surat by leaving the Ashram and insisted for him to come down to Jabalpur, but he refused and told me to come down to Surat as early as possible.

4. I further say that accordingly I travelled to Surat by train via Ujjain and arrived at Surat on 10.10.2008 early in the morning and my disciple Shri Bhimbhai Pasricha had to receive me at Railway Station and I went to his place at Atop Nagar.

5. I say that here at about 10 AM, I met officer Mr Sawant who had apparently travelled to Surat to trace the ownership of a LML Freedom two wheeler and I questioned him as to what had happened to my vehicle and why you are asking about it. I say that I it was at this point time, Mr Sawant told me that my vehicle had been allegedly planted with the explosives and subsequently detonated in Malegaon in the last week of September. I also say that it was here for the first time, I came to know that my old vehicle had been allegedly used in Malegaon blast, which was completely shocking to me. I confirmed to Mr Sawant that the LML Freedom 2 wheeler of the colour and number, he mentioned had once belonged to me.

6. I say that in Surat during the course of my interrogation with Mr Sawant, I mentioned to him that the LML Freedom two wheeler once owned by me was subsequently sold to one Sunil Joshi of Madhya Pradesh way back in October, 2004 and that Mr Joshi had paid me Rs 24,000/- for the same. I had also signed the necessary TT Form for RTO transfer in October, 2004 itself. I categorically asserted to Mr Sawant that since October, 2004 I had no control over the vehicle or its movements and usage.

7. I further say that in spite of my answers, Mr. Sawant repeatedly asked me how the vehicle reached Malegaon and how it came to be involved in the bomb blast on 29.9.2008. I repeatedly replied that I could not answer his questions as I had no control of the vehicle since October, 2004.

8. I also say that Mr Sawant however informed me that he did not believe me and that I would have to accompany him and his ATS team to Mumbai for further interrogation and he assured me that after such interrogation I would be free to go back to my ashram.

9. It is significant to mention that I was not formally arrested on 10.10.2008. Even though no formal summons to attend as a Witness was served upon me to make my self available for interrogation in Mumbai, and even though I was within my rights to insist that I be interrogated at the place where I reside ie Jabalpur, trusting Mr Sawant and having nothing to hide, I agreed to accompany the ATS team to Mumbai. I say Mr Sawant told me take my father along with me. However, due to his old age, I told him it was not proper take down him to Mumbai and suggested that my disciple, one Mr Bhimbhai Pasricha, in whose very residence my questioning was being done by the ATS. I further say that at 5.15 PM myself, Mr Pasricha and the ATS officer left Surat and reached Bombay on the very night of 10.10.2008. In Bombay I was taken straight away to the ATS office at Kalachowkie.

10. Thereafter for two days I was detained and interrogated by the ATS team in Mumbai. The questions were repetitive and directed at somehow involving me in the bomb blast in Malegaon on 29.9.2008. My answers remained constant throughout.

11. I further say that on 12.10.2008 the ATS changed the mode of interrogation and became extremely aggressive with me. At first they asked my said disciple Mr Bhimbhai Pasricha to beat me with sticks, belts etc, on my palms, forehands, soles, etc. When Mr Pasricha refused to do so, he was severely beaten by the ATS. Ultimately with the greatest reluctance, he complied with the ATS orders but obviously being my disciple, he exerted the very minimum of force on me. He was then pushed aside by a member of the ATS squad knows as Khanwilkar, who then himself commenced beating me severely with a belt on my hands, forearms, palms, feet, soles, causing me bruises, swelling and contusions in these areas.

12. I say that from the 13th onwards, I say that I was beaten during the day, night and midnight. On two occasions I was even woken up in the early hours of the morning at 4 am and questioned about my knowledge of the blasts. On these occasions, I was beaten by a senior officer having a moustache, whom I can identify. In addition I was subject to vulgar abuse and obscene language by members of the ATS team interrogating me. My Guru was abused and my chastity was questioned. I was physically and verbally traumatised to the extent that I wanted to commit suicide.

13. I further say that on 14th taken out for the examination at a far away place from ATS and was brought back in the afternoon and that I day I had no meeting or even knowledge about Mr Pasricha.

14. I say that on 15th October, after noon, both myself and Mr Pasricha were taken by ATS vehicles to Hotel Rajdoot in Nagpada locality of Mumbai and were kept in Room Nos. 315 and 314 respectively and we were made to sign the Hotel Entry register, however, we did not pay or deposit any money with the hotel manager, which was done by the ATS.

15. I say that after putting into this hotel I was asked to make phone calls from mobile No. 94066 00004 and from one more mobile instrument not belonging to me to speak couple of persons including one of my female disciple and I was asked to say that I was in a hotel in Mumbai and hale & hearty and was doing fine. I say that at that time, I did not know why I was made to say so. I would reveal the name of my female disciple at an appropriate time.

16. I say that as a result of the custodial violence/torture, mental stress, anxiety that were developed in the process, I was subjected to, I developed acute abdominal and kidney pains. I lost my appetite, became nauseous and giddy and prone to having bouts of unconsciousness. In view of this, within few hours after putting in Rajdoot Hospital, I was removed from the ATS office and was taken a hospital which learnt it to be Shusrusha Hospital wherein I was kept in ICU. I say that within half an hour Mr Bhimbhai Pasricha came down to Shushrusha Hospital with some ATS men and my Hospital admission forms, and other medical examination forms, etc were signed by him. I say that Mr Khanwilkar deposited money to the hospital management for me, which I learnt from Mr Bhimbhai. I say that after some time Mr Pasricha left the Hospital along with the ATS men and thereafter I have no contact with of any nature.

17. I say that I underwent a treatment over here for 3 to 4 days. I say that as my condition did not improve, I was taken to another hospital whose name I cannot recall. This hospital consisted of a high rise building where I was treated for 2 to 3 days. I say that no female police constable was by my side either in Hotel Rajdoot or in either of the two hospitals.

18. I say that both at the hotel and the hospitals, I was carried on a stretcher and my face was always covered with a black hood to avoid my face from being seen. From the second hospital, I was brought back to the ATS office at Kalachowkie.

19. I say that I was finally arrested on 23.10.2008 and produced before the Chief Judicial Magistrate, Nasik on 24.1.2008. I was remanded to police custody on that date till 3.11.2008. Up to the 24.10.2008 and even sometime thereafter, I was denied access to a Lawyer or any member of my family. A polygraph test was conducted on me while I was in illegal detention prior to 23.10.2008. Thereafter a second polygraph test was conducted on 01.11.2008. On 04.11.2008, after I was remanded to Judicial custody on being presented before Nasik court on 03.11.2008, I also say that a Narco analysis test was also conducted on me.

20. I say that both the lie detector test as well as the Narco analysis test were conducted with out my consent. Never the less all these investigative tests have only established my innocence in the Malegaon bomb blast that took place on 29.9.2008. I finally was allowed to meet my sister Mrs Parthibha Bhagwan Jha on the evening of 02.11.2008, who had brought vakalatnamas of Advocate Ganesh Sovani who was engaged by my sister and her husband Mr Bhagwan Jha and had met him couple times in that week. This meeting was not conducted in private since members of the ATS stood within hearing distance of my sister and myself. I met my Advocate Ganesh Sovani for the first time in the court room of this Hon’ble Court very briefly for 4 to 5 minutes prior to the arguments commencing on my remand application on 03.11.2008.

21. I say that this period of 4 to 5 minutes was too short for me to give complete instructions as to what had transpired from 10th October onwards, about my vehicle, my stay at Kalachowkie, my illegal detention, the ill-treatment mitigated to me by ATS men, the beating job that was forced on my disciple to beat me, but which he carried out reluctantly, without any force, etc. I say that for this reasons, all the details had not reflected in the hand written application that was placed on record by my advocate Mr Sovani, for paucity of time to give all these instructions.

22. I say that on the evening of Wednesday 12.11.2008, I was allowed to meet my Advocate Ganesh Sovani for about 5-6 minutes again in the presence of female staff of Byculla jail. I say that again on 13.11.2008 I was allowed to talk to my said lawyer for 8-10 minutes to give him some more details. Thereafter, on Friday 14.11.2008 evening at about 04.30 PM, I was given nearly 20 minutes to talk to my said lawyer at length, and it was during this period I could narrate my entire ordeal with the ATS which is reproduced hereinabove.

23. I unambiguously state that I am totally innocent of any offence whatsoever. In particular I have no connection with the Malegaon bomb blast of 29.9.2008. While my former ownership of LML Freedom 2 wheeler, which was allegedly used in the Malegaon bomb blast entitled the ATS to interrogate me, that agency was not entitled to subject me to the treatment mentioned hereinabove. Their conduct discloses a blatant violation of statutory provisions of law, custodial abuse and violence, mental and physical torture and prolonged illegal detention. The ATS are fully aware that I am innocent. It appears however that they have a mandate from their political superiors to necessarily implicate me with Malegaon blasts with a view to suggest that Hindu Religious extremists were resorting to terrorism. The prolonged illegal detention, custodial abuse and physical torture were designed to compel me to confess to crimes I had not committed. This attempt of false implication persisted for the entire period between 10.10.2008 and 02.11.2008 . During this entire period I was deliberately isolated from my family and denied access to Lawyers. I say that no arrest panchanama was done after my arrest on 23.10.2008 and I was never asked about the names, addresses and telephone / mobile Nos. details to whom I would like to convey my arrest. I say that attention from my illegal detention was sought to be diverted by the ATS by daily leaking information regarding my involvement which was manifestly false and only indicated the malafide nature of the investigation..

24. I say that While I was thus painted as a sinister mastermind of the Malegaon blasts, a role which has now been subtly reassigned by the ATS to Lt Col Purohit — crippled and vulnerable as I was by the detention, abuse and torture, I could not protest my innocence. Nor was I allowed access to family, friends and Lawyers who could have done so.

25. I say that it is necessary that a detailed enquiry of my illegal detention, custodial torture, etc needs to be done and for which I am ready and willing to get subjected to any such medical test or tests and I also want the ATS officers, who interrogated me, tortured me, etc should also be put to the same tests.

26. I say that the ATS has caused blatant violations of my human rights and I should get a justice and they need to be adequately dealt with as per the provisions of law.

27. In the circumstances I now pray for the following relief:

a) that the ATS be directed to submit an explanation for my detention without authority of law between 10.10.2008 and 23.10.2008;

b). that enquiry/investigation be conducted into my accusation made hereinabove on oath, regarding custodial torture/violence and mental and psychological abuse;

c). that such investigation as referred to in (b) above, include a polygraph test, as well as Narco analysis on me to determine the veracity of my accusations;

d). that such investigation to include a polygraph test and narco analysis on officers of the ATS named by me, and also of those officers whose names, I do not know, but I can identify, for they subjecting me to mental and physical abuse during custody as well as others to be identified by me;

e) that a report be called for from the ATS for the reasons of my admission in two hospitals ( Shusrusha an another) and the medical treatment undergone by me at the said two hospitals;

f) The ATS be directed to disclose the reasons for my stay at Hotel Rajdoot at Mumbai.;

g) For such further and other reliefs as may be fit and proper in the facts and circumstances of the case.

Filed in court on 17.11.2008
Contents Explained to the
Deponent in Hindi &
Confirmed with Deponent.
(Deponent)