The Bombay High Court Thursday allowed Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur,
the prime accused in the 2008 Malegaon blast in Maharashtra, to
travel to Madhya Pradesh by a second class air-conditioned coach
for a court hearing there March 13, her lawyer said.
She is currently lodged in a Mumbai
The division bench of Justice V.M. Kanade and Justice P.D. Kode
granted relief to Thakur after an extensive hearing, said her
lawyer Ganesh Sovani.
Thakur's presence is required for a court hearing in Madhya
Pradesh's capital Bhopal March 13 before the National
Investigation Agency Special Judge V.K. Pandey.
Last month, Thakur challenged a special court order restraining
her from travelling by air or by first class in a train for court
hearings in Bhopal, Sovani said.
She filed a petition in the Bombay High Court seeking permission
to travel by air or first class by train to Bhopal on the grounds
of her frail health and security concerns.
"The judges (today) relied upon the circumstance, that she is a
woman, suffering from lumbar spondylosis and she was prepared to
bear her expenses as well as that of the police escort party,"
Sovani told IANS.
On Jan 16, Thakur filed an application before the special
Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) court seeking
directions to the Maharashtra government and the NIA to allow her
to travel to Bhopal by flight or first class train, at her
Sovani said that when she travelled to Madhya Pradesh in the past,
she had been taken in a second class unreserved coach. She was
carried on a stretcher which was placed near a toilet.
Owing to her health problems, she was greatly inconvenienced
during the 18-hour journey, said the lawyer.
The special MCOCA court Jan 21 rejected the application on the
grounds that the jail manual did not provide for such a request.