The Supreme Court on Monday asked the Bombay High Court to hear Lieutenant Colonel Prasad Shrikant Purohit's plea challenging the validity of the prosecution sanction for his trial under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) on November 21.
"We had always raised the issue that there is no valid sanction before the court had taken cognizance. So, that issue is pending before the High Court. Now, we had requested the High Court that till this issue is decided the trial court should defer framing charges," Neela Gokhale, counsel for Colonel Purohit, told ANI.
"But, the High Court had refused to grant such prayer. Against this, we had come to the Supreme Court. Now, the top court has requested the High Court to decide at the earliest issue regarding charges and sanction for prosecution of Colonel Purohit. So, in all probability and in reference of the order of the Supreme Court, the High Court will surely hear the issue of sanction raised by us in the appeal first before the trial proceeds," Gokhale added.
Earlier, a Special Court had commenced a trial against Colonel Purohit and six other accused in the 2008 Malegaon blasts case, which took place near a mosque in Malegaon, Maharashtra and claimed six lives.
Meanwhile, the Special NIA court has asked the registrar to submit a copy of photographs and videos of incidents to Colonel Purohit.