Lt Col. Prasad Purohit turned up in court here on Tuesday as smartly as ever in a white shirt, trousers and polished shoes to complete the formalities for the bail granted by the Supreme Court on Monday in the 2008 Malegaon blast case. But gone was his usually intent expression; he was relaxed, even smiling.
A Reporter asked him Wasn’t he angry, disappointed spending nine years in jail without trial? “I blame my destiny, I blame no one,” he said. “The Army teaches you character. I know myself. The case has not fazed me…,” he said, when asked if the public perception of him after accusations of being part of the terror plot bothered him. “My mother and wife would have disowned me had I ever been dishonest or involved.”
Lt. Colonel Purohit, who was in prison for the past nine years, moved the top court after the Bombay High Court rejected his bail plea earlier this year.
Purohit, a Military Intelligence official who has 12 years left in service, pointed at his lawyer Shrikant Shivade and said “he is my savior”. He kept repeating: “I am very happy. I want to get back to my family. I have two families. The first is the armed forces. And my family which is my mother, sister and wife, two sons and my two dogs, and to my horse too, had he been alive still.”
All formalities over, he will be released from Taloja jail early on Wednesday morning. Two serving and two retired Army officers had turned up in court, in his support. They wanted to escort him home in an Army vehicle from jail, where he returned on Tuesday.
Purohit’s wife Aparna, who is still in Delhi, said on phone: “My husband will be released from the jail tomorrow (Wednesday) as all necessary legal procedures have been completed.” She will fly to Mumbai to receive her husband outside the jail. “Tomorrow will be a special day for me,” she said. Purohit’s house in Pune was found shut on Tuesday. His mother, sister and children have shifted to a relative’s place.