The Punjab and Haryana high court on Wednesday adjourned the petition filed by Kamal Chauhan, co-accused in the 2007 Samjhauta Express bomb blast case, who had challenged Panchkula National Investigation Agency (NIA) special court’s May 9 orders of extending his judicial custody period from 90 to 180 days, for hearing on July 3 before the regular bench.
The petition came up for hearing before the vacation bench headed by justice KC Puri which was of the view that there was no urgency in the case as there were serious allegations against the accused Chauhan which needed to be thoroughly investigation. Hence, the bench directed that instead of the vacation bench, the case needed to be heard by the regular bench after the summer vacations were over on July 3.
Chauhan was arrested at the NIA camp office, Noida (UP) on February 12 and he is at present behind the bars in Ambala central jail. He had allegedly planted one of the four bombs in Samjhauta Express train bound for Lahore. Due to two explosions 68 passengers had died on February 18, 2007 near Diwana railway station, Panipat.
The two other co-accused in the case locked up in Ambala central jail are Lokesh Sharma and Swami Aseemanand.
Chauhan had submitted that his custody of 90 days was going to expire on May 11 but on May 9 the NIA in order to defeat his right to be released on bail moved an application for extension of period of investigation from 90 days to 180 which was allowed by the NIA special court Panchkula without issuing any notice to the petitioner. Whereas, the NIA had countered his allegation stating that the trial court had passed the orders as per law after following the due procedure.