Prime Minister Manmohan Singh called up LK Advani after the leader of the Opposition on Tuesday demanded a judicial probe into Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur’s allegation that she was tortured by the Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS). Thakur, an accused in the Malegaon blast case, is in judicial custody.
Singh deputed National Security Adviser MK Narayanan and Intelligence Bureau chief P.S. Haldar to brief Advani about the “facts” of the probe.
Taken aback by Advani’s statement, the PM wanted to know why he had made the demand.
A senior Bharatiya Janata Party leader said Advani explained he had to speak out after seeing Thakur’s affidavit filed in a Nashik court. Singh reportedly told Advani he would look into the matter.
In her affidavit, vetted by lawyer Mahesh Jethmalani, Thakur said she was physically and verbally abused and traumatised to the extent that she wanted to commit suicide. She said an all-male police team manhandled her and no woman constable was present when she was questioned or treated for injuries she suffered under detention.