The decision came on Sadhvi Pragya's appeal to the court to dismiss an application seeking to bar her from contesting the Lok Sabha polls.
Court relief for Sadhvi Pragya: In a huge relief for Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur, a special National Investigation Agency (NIA) court on Wednesday refused to bar the Bharatiya Janata Party’s Bhopal candidate from contesting Lok Sabha elections. The decision came on Sadhvi Pragya’s appeal to the court to dismiss an application seeking to bar her from contesting the Lok Sabha polls.
“In ongoing elections this Court does not have any legal powers to prohibit anyone from contesting elections,It is job of electoral officers to decide. This court can’t stop the accused number 1 from contesting elections, this application is negated,” the court said.
However, the NIA maintained that it cannot say that there is no prima facie case against Sadhvi Pragya Thakur. “At this juncture NIA cannot state that there is no prima facie case against the accused as NIA has not challenged the order (rejecting discharge of the accused) before High Court,” the central agency said.
Lawyer representing the applicant argued in the court that Sadhvi Pragya, who is an accused in the 2008 Malegaon blast case, was out on bail on the grounds of ill health, however, she has been campaigning for elections.
“She isn’t attending the court proceedings on grounds of ill-health, but she is campaigning for elections where she is not looking ill,” the lawyer said.
Earlier, Sadhvi Pragya, in her appeal in the court, had described the application against her as ‘frivolous’ which has been moved with a ‘political agenda’. “The applicant has deliberately chosen this court to ventilate misconceived and frivolous application for want of publicity and extraneous reasons with political agenda,” Sadhvi Pragya said.
The application has been filed by one Nisar Sayyad who lost one of his sons in the Malegaon blast.
Six people were killed and over 100 injured in a bomb blast at Malegaon, a communally-sensitive textile town in north Maharashtra, on September 29, 2008.
Sadhvi Pragya is up against veteran Congress leader and two-time Madhya Pradesh CM Digvijaya Singh from Bhopal where polling is scheduled to be held on May 12. Counting of votes will be done on May 23.
(With inputs from agencies)