The National Investigation Agency (NIA), that has taken over the Mecca Masjid bomb blast probe from the Central Bureau of Investigation recently, is likely to take the alleged mastermind of the explosion, Swami Aseemanand and his two associates into custody soon.
According to sources, the NIA has formally informed the 4th additional metropolitan sessions judge, Nampally, about the registration of a case in masjid blast of May 18, 2007, issuance of first information report (FIR) and taking over of the probe from the CBI. The NIA, that has its headquarters in New Delhi, will be filing a fresh charge-sheet against the accused Swami Aseemanand, Devender Gupta, Lokesh Sharma and others with due help from its Hyderabad office.
The NIA had earlier grilled Aseemanand in the Samjhautha Express blast case. In this case, the Swami had recorded a confessional statement under Section 164 CrPC before the Tis Hazari court in New Delhi wherein he reportedly admitted his and the role of his associates in the rightwing terror attacks across the country including in the Mecca Masjid explosion. However, the Swami has retracted the statement later.
The CBI had already filed a charge-sheet against Devender Gupta and Lokesh Sharma and was collecting more evidence against the Swami when Union home minister P Chidambaram announced the transfer of the case to NIA.
Sources said though the murder case of Sunil Joshi, an RSS pracharak and one of the key accused in the Mecca Masjid and Ajmer dargah blast cases, should have also been transferred to NIA, there is resistance from certain quarters especially from the Madhya Pradesh government. TNN