Lieutenant Colonel Shrikant Prasad Purohit, an army man accused in the Malegaon, is set to re-join the Indian Army, after being released from jail by the Supreme Court. A defense ministry statements states that Purohit will be “attached to an army unit” though will remain suspended from his job.
The defense ministry maintained that Purohit continues to be a part of the Indian Army as someone who is serving out his term of suspension, “but since he has now been ordered to be released on bail, he has to be attached to an Army unit.”
Considering Purohit’s attachment to the army as an “open arrest”, Purohit would have to abide by certain rules and restrictions imposed by the Indian government though he stands released by the courts from jail. The restrictions in place include traveling. It is only after the final verdict in the case about the blast that Purohit would become entitled to return for active duty.
After the court order is examined by the Judge Advocate General (JAG), Lt Col Purohit would report to Southern Command Liaison Unit (Intelligence wing), from where he was arrested. Though he would be allowed to wear his uniform, he won’t be able to attend any public meeting, event or gathering. Furthermore, he will be entitled to only 25% of his salary till his suspension order is fully revoked.
However, according to a news report, Lt Col Purohit has approached the Armed Force Tribunal (AFT) for being given 75% of the salary, instead of the stipulated 25% entitled for a suspended soldier.
Lieutenant Colonel Purohit was accused of being a part of the right wing organization – Abhinav Bharat – and providing explosives for making of the bomb that exploded in Malegaon town on September 29, 2008, killing several people.
During the trial Lt Col Purohit had maintained that he had been keeping an eye on a group suspected with terrorist links and had even kept some of his seniors in loop about all developments related to it . The Indian Army’s Court of Inquiry supported some of Purohit’s claims including the fact that some of his seniors were also unaware of his work as it was majorly an undercover work.
Eight persons were killed in the Malegaon blast on September, 2008 and more than 70 people being injured. Arrested towards the end of 2008, Colonel Purohit remains suspended from the army ever since.