Lt. Col Purohit’s name is being heard since 9 years, but recently he has been in the limelight after the Supreme Court granted him bail in 2008 Malegaon Blast case. Even after hundreds of debates and thousands of arguments, many people even today do not know who really is Col Purohit or what exactly happened to him and how he got arrested.
Col Srikanth Purohit was an upright army officer who was serving infantry division in the anti-terrorism unit in Kashmir. During an anti terrorism operation in Kashmir, he had suffered a bad knee injury after which his knee was reconstructed and was advised not to take serious physical activity which would cause permanent damage to his knee. After this incident, he became unfit for the infantry division and was posted as an intelligent officer in Devlali in Nashik district of the Southern Command Liaison Unit, Pune.
Based on his service profile and extreme hard work, he was advised to take up course in Arabic language in the AEC (Army Education Corps) Training College and Centre at Panchmarhi in Madhya Pradesh. Col Purohit himself gave in writing that he wanted to take Arabic coaching which was a 18 month program. This was also strongly recommended by the Commanding Officer of Southern Command Liaison Unit of Military Intelligence.
For those who do not know what is Military Intelligence, it is a unit in the army wing which exclusively deals in counter terrorism acts, intelligence gathering, decoding and preventing terror operations and mainly infiltrating the terror outfits. This unit is completely independent from the Intelligence Bureau, expect that they share information when required or on request by concerned person. The army intelligence is headed by the Indian Army and comes under the Ministry of Defence.
Purohit, in the Intelligence wing, proved to be extremely brilliant and was very successful in infiltrating SIMI terror organisations and identifying illegal money trail from Pakistan. He was very successful in building a strong network infiltrating the ISI in Pakistan. Due to his brilliant work, the Indian army had conferred various commendation medals and appreciation awards which had made him gain a respectable position and honour in the Army Intelligence.
It is also told that Purohit’s intelligence network was so massive and fool proof that he managed to trace the fake money racket trail from Malda to Nepal to Pakistan. He was successful in decoding the involvement of most influential politicians in India who were directly linked with Dawood Ibrahim and fake money racket from Pakistan. According to Army officers, Col. Purohit had prevented 7 terror attacks in a span of 2 years. But the most shocking part is Col. Purohit was well aware of the 26/11 attack and had informed the news to his seniors just days before he was arrested by Maharashtra ATS.
So now we know that Col Purohit was not just an ordinary man, but a very influential and high profiled intelligence officer who knew every details of politician’s involvement in anti national activities.
So how was Col Purohit trapped?!
Since 2002, there were three people whom Congress wanted to get rid of. One was Narendra Modi, L K Advani and RSS Chief Mohan Bhagvat. Narendra Modi was one of the most powerful and successful leader who had brought BJP to power in Gujarat. On the other hand LK Advani was next in line after AB Vajpayee who had the potential to become Prime Minister in 2004. The ideological mentor to the BJP and the backbone of the organisation, RSS was something Congress wanted to eliminate forever.
Congress initially tried to eliminate Narendra Modi political using Godhra riots, but they were unsuccessful as the popularity of Modi grew more after 2002 riots. Their constant malign against him using every institution from CBI, ATS, IB could not convict him and instead he became undefeatable for Congress. Ishrat Jahan was another ploy to kill Narendra Modi, but the Intelligence Bureau was successful in identifying her cruel deeds and she was neutralized before the plan was executed.
When all options failed, the only way to attack them was to make them look communal, divisive and divide the Hindu vote banks which mainly supported BJP. This was the time Congress invented the new “Hindu Terror” propaganda and twisted the facts in Malegaon blasts. Initially the police produced evidence that the blast was carried out by SIMI terror group with the help of LeT. But once the investigation was taken over by ATS which was headed by Hemanth Karkare, the entire story was changed and Hindu groups were blamed for the terror attack. Sadhvi Pragya and 3 others were arrested in the case without providing proper evidence and accused them of planting bombs in a motor cycle.
It was in October, 2008 Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur, Shiv Narayan Gopal Singh Kalsanghra and Shyam Bhawarlal Sahu was produced in court as accused in Malegaon blast.
The game was not over as there was almost no evidence against these people to prove that they carried out terror attack. Here started the Col. Purohit’s dark days.
According to letter written by Col. Purohit, “Statutory Complaint” (https://www.scribd.com/doc/233132999/) dated 05 August 2009 to his Commanding Officer, Brigadier Sandeep Kumar, he says that on 24th October 2008, he was called in the middle of the night by Colonel Rajiv K. Srivastav, who claimed that he had orders from Army Headquarters to question him about Malegaon blasts.
But what is surprising is, R K Srivatsav had provided no written orders as he claimed he was instructed by Army headquarters to question Purohit. It was on 29 October, 2008, at about 9 AM, Lt. Col. G.C. Mohanta, Adjutant informed Col Purohit that he had to urgently meet R K Srivatsav and accompany him to New Delhi. (In army one cannot go to other places without informing his seniors or without getting movement order). Col. G.C. Mohanta provided him a movement order which said he was suppose to report to the Integrated Headquarters of the Army (Ministry of Defence) for interaction with Military Intelligence in Delhi.
Just before Purohit could board flight to Delhi along with Srivatav, his mobile phones were snatched and deposited in Adjutant AEC Training College. Suddenly everything changed and Srivatsav informed him that they were not going to New Delhi but to Mumbai. This was totally an illegal and violation of the Army conduct rules as no army officer is allowed to change his routes violating movement order. Col Purohit sensed there was something wrong and tried to contact his house in a public phone, but Srivatsav literally threatened him of physical danger if he called anyone.
According to Purohit, he was then taking in a TATA SuMO vehicle which apparently belonged to Intelligence Bureau and drove 2 hours away from city. He was taken to a Bungalow where a team from ATS, IB and police were present in civil dress. Col Srivatsav suddenly started physically torturing him by slapping him repeatedly, kicking him all over his body, twisted his nipples and private parts. The police and ATS officers also joined Srivatsav in torturing Purohit by hitting his face and standing on his feet and hands.
They started to abuse Purohit’s mother and wife and finally asked him to turn approver in Malegaon Blast. Purohit in his letter said that Srivatsav threatened if he doesn’t own up to the Malegaon Blast he will strip his mother, sister and wife naked and parade front of him! But Srivatsav failed to turn Purohit approver. It is told that Purohit was forced to name top BJP and RSS leaders in the Malegaon blast.
Five days after illegal detention, brutal torture he was officially arrested on November 4th 2008 and produced to court as accused number 9. After his arrest, for 9 years he stayed in jail with no trail and all the investigative agencies failed to provide single evidence against him.
Adv. Harish Salve speaks on #BailForColPurohit: "Terror incidents politicised in India, wrong to give Malegaon a political colour"
— Republic (@republic) August 21, 2017
On May 31st 2014, Col Purohit had written letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi in which he claimed entire case against him was fabricated and stage-managed by Maharashtra ATS, for reasons best known to them and their political masters. His appeals in this regard to the then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde, Defence Minister A.K. Antony, and even the then President of India, fell on deaf ears. He claimed he was treated worst than a War Prisoner which broke him physically and mentally.
He provided proofs and medical certificates which showed that his 2 nerves in the hands were damaged in addition to permanent damage caused to his already injured knee.
He directly pointed that his detention and arrest was masterminded by someone very powerful other than ATS and pointed towards the incumbent President of the Indian National Congress which is none other than Sonia Gandhi.
All this happened just because Col Purohit knew a lot about the involvement of few most influential politicians who used their position to carry out anti National activities in the country. From his letters 3 things were very clear:
- Dawood Ibrahim was in India in 2005 and was saved by a very powerful person of Maharashtra.
- The black money for all anti National activities was being supplied from Pakistan to Kashmir to Delhi in the car of a minister and powerful politician of Kashmir.
- The 26/11 attack had the support of few Indian politicians and was planned to make it a Hindu terror attack and his Col Purohit would have stopped this attack if he continued in Intelligence unit.
— NewsX (@NewsX) August 23, 2017
The theory which ATS planted that Col Purohit and Chaturvedi were involved in illegal weapons and bomb trade was debunked by 2 eyewitness Major Pravin Khanzade and Subedar (then) Keshav K. Pawar who revealed that ATS Asst. police inspector, Shekhar Bagade had planted evidence at Chaturvedi’s house 15 days before his arrest. All this record is available in the Army documents and were told to be kept hidden by previous government.
After 9 years of torture, Col Purohit deserves the honour and respect and a proper investigation must be conducted against all those politicians, Col R K Srivatsav, ATS officers who illegally detained and tortured a serving army officer.
Manushi : https://www.manushi.in/articles.php?articleId=1803#.WaO4JdFLfIU