SC asks Madani to seek regular bail



New Delhi: The Supreme Court Tuesday directed Kerala-based People's Democratic Party leader Abdul Nasser Madani, an accused in 2008 Bangalore serial blasts case, to apply for a regular bail as he has already been arrested.

A bench of Justices Markandey Katju and T S Thakur also said that Madani can apply for an interim bail before the competent court, which shall be considered on the same day.

It said the competent court shall not be influenced by any of the observations made by the Karnataka High Court while dismissing his anticipatory bail on August 3.

The apex court said Madani's anticipatory cannot be considered as he has already been arrested. The state counsel Sanjay Hegde informed the bench about his arrest in the afternoon.

Earlier, senior counsel Pinaki Mishra, appearing for the accused, alleged that Madani was arrested "to frustrate" his efforts in seeking anticipatory bail.

He claimed that though the non-bailable warrant (NBW) against Madani was issued on June 11, his arrest was effected only today to pre-empt his anticipatory bail.

The counsel further submitted that under section 43-D the Prevention of Unlawful Activities Act, the grant of regular bail would also become difficult for the accused.

However, the apex court declined to entertain further argument on the issue and said the counsel can raise his grievances before the appropriate court at the time of applying for the regular/interim bail.

The bench clarified that the court concerned was bound to hear the plea for interim bail on the same day as per the number of rulings laid down by it on earlier occasions.

The High Court had described the blasts as a "terrorist act" and said it was rejecting the bail plea considering the seriousness of the alleged offences committed by Madani.

The High Court had said the offences committed by Madani came very much under the purview of the Act and, therefore, "in view of the internal security and interests of the nation," the plea was being rejected.

A fast track court had on July 9 dismissed Madani's anticipatory bail plea on the ground that there was "no prima facie case" to grant him relief.

A chargesheet has been filed against Madani and 31 others for their alleged involvement in the blasts in Bangalore that left a woman dead and 20 injured on July 25, 2008.

The PDP leader was also an accused in the case relating to 1998 Coimbatore serial blasts in which 58 people were killed. However, he was acquitted by the trial court.

PTI