Following Swami Aseemanand’s confession that the 2006 Malegaon blasts were the handiwork of his extremist Hindu group, an old complaint by Shaikh Mohammad Ali, one of the 13 jailed for the act, may come back to haunt the Mumbai Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS) that arrested him.
Ali claims he was charged for the Malegaon blasts because he refused to turn approver in the 7/11 Mumbai train blasts of 2006. He alleges this is the sole reason he was included among the train blast and Malegaon blasts accused. He has also claimed he was already in police custody when the Malegaon blasts occurred.
Aseemanand has in his statement to a magistrate claimed a group led by murdered RSS pracharak Sunil Joshi was behind the Malegaon blasts.
“Ali complained to various authorities but no one cared. Now, after the alleged confession of Aseemanand, the complaint should be taken very seriously,” Ali’s lawyer Avinash Rasal told HT, which is in possession of Ali’s handwritten complaint.
There is a discrepancy about when Ali, an activist of the Students’ Islamic Movement of India, was picked up after the Mumbai train blasts. While the chargesheet claims he was arrested on September 29, 2006, he maintains he was in the ATS’s illegal detention from July 31.
The Malegaon blast occurred on September 8 that year. He also claims that till he was officially arrested, he was allowed to keep his mobile phone and used it to make several calls. Tracing the phone records would establish his location between July 31 and September 29 — at two ATS offices in Mumbai.
Another Malegaon accused, Asif Khan Bashir Khan, charged with the Mumbai blasts too, has also claimed he was framed for refusing to turn approver.