Prime accused in Malegaon blast case and suspended Lt. Col. Prasad Shrikant Purohit walked out of jail after nine years.
He was driven out of the prison in a vehicle at around 10.45 am. A team of Military Police and Quick Response Team of the Army escorted Purohit to a military station at Colaba south Mumbai.
Purohit came under the radar of investigators after being accused of floating Abhinav Bharat, a right-wing group that allegedly planned and executed the blasts, and also of collecting huge funds and using them to procure arms and explosives and organizing meetings where the Malegaon attack was planned.
The apex court had granted bail to Lt.Col. Purohit on the 21st last.
Setting aside Bombay HC's order, the Supreme Court drooped MCOCA charges due to lack of evidence against accused in the previous cases.
On September 29, 2008, a bomb kept on a motorcycle exploded near Hamidia Masjid in Malegaon, a communally sensitive textile town in Nasik district of north Maharashtra.
A resident of Prabhat Road in Pune, Lt Col Purohit would now be attached to one of the units of Southern Command even as the Army headquarters would be subsequently taking a call on his suspension.
Speaking at a sessions court on Tuesday evening, Purohit had said he looked forward to re-joining the Army. "I want to wear my uniform and return to the Army". It is the outermost layer of my skin. He told the Supreme Court that he was acting as an army mole and was not involved in terrorist activity. "I love my wife, who has slogged for so many years", he said, talking about future plans. Once the formalities are completed, Purohit is likely to be released from prison.
The Army didnt "let me down", said Purohit. Congress leader Abdul Bagwan said since the NIA was lax Purohit secured bail.