Mumbai, Feb 2 (PTI) Dhananjay Desai, an accused in the Mohsin Shaikh murder case, has given an undertaking to the High Court while obtaining bail that he would not take part in the activities of Hindu Rashtra Sena, his organisation, till the trial is over.
Shaikh, an IT professional, was killed in Pune in 2014 following an alleged provocative speech made by Desai.
He got bail from the Bombay High Court on January 17.
As per the bail order which was made available a few days ago, the court took an undertaking from Desai that he would not “run the Hindu Rashtra Sena”, or be a part of it or give speeches on behalf of the organisation till the trial is over.
Desai also undertook to apply to another bench of the high court for vacation of a stay to the trial. The stay had been granted on Desai’s application in 2017.
Desai’s bail application was rejected eight times by the sessions court and once by high court’s another bench.
Justice Sadhana Jadhav, who granted him bail against a surety of Rs 50,000, said in her order that Desai, accused of “provoking the public to wage a war against Muslims”, deserved to be granted bail as he was willing to furnish the undertaking.
The prosecution, strongly opposing his bail plea, pointed out that Desai had 17 criminal cases against him.
However, the high court noted that the police had not taken “any coercive action against him except file the chargesheet” so far, despite so many cases lodged against him.
Desai’s lawyer Abhijit Desai argued that his client was not present when the crime took place, and 20 other accused in the case were already out on bail.
According to the police, Desai delivered a provocative speech without police permission after morphed pictures of Hindu deities were circulated on social media.
A group of Hindu men, provoked by Desai’s inflammatory speech, went on a rampage in Hadapsar area of Pune.
They spotted two men, one of them with a beard, on a motorbike, and attacked them. Shaikh, one of the men on the motorcycle, died in the attack while his friend Riyaz escaped.
Desai was subsequently arrested.
In January 2017, another bench of the HC granted bail to three accused allegedly involved in the attack.
This is published unedited from the PTI feed.