The Curious Case of Lt Col Purohit

The late Hemant Karkare began unraveling the saffron terror network. The probe found 37 audiotapes of meetings of the terrorist organisation Abhinav Bharat in which the Malegaon blasts accused including Sadhvi Pragya Thakur and Lt Col Shrikant Purohit could be heard making detailed plans for terrorism. In the tapes, Purohit can be heard saying: “We must aim for militarisation of the organisation (Abhinav Bharat). Every member at all levels must have a basic knowledge of weapons…. our organisation will propagate establishment of all-India Hindu rashtra called Abhinav Bharat.” In another conversation, Purohit is heard speaking to Col Aditya Bappaditya Dhar “about how this country should be taken over by the army”, with Col Dhar telling him “I distributed 20,000 maps of Akhand Bharat among the jawans on 26 January... It is my humble attempt to sow the seeds.”

Today, Lt Col Purohit is out on bail and the Rohini Salian, former Public Prosecutor in the Malegaon Blasts case, has said on record that there was pressure from top echelons of Government on her to go soft in the case.

Lt Col Purohit’s case in Court is that he infiltrated the Abhinav Bharat – an organisation he founded with Nathuram Godse’s niece and Savarkar’s nephew’s wife Himani Savarkar – as a military intelligence officer. This is a strange claim – for the following reasons.

First, if Lt Col Purohit was in fact a nationalist military intelligence officer spying on seditious terrorist organizations like Abhinav Bharat and Sanatan Sanstha, why are the latter organizations still hailing him as a hero? The son of Hmani Savarkar, Satyaki Savarkar, said after Purohit’s release, “Lt. Col. Purohit is a brave Army officer. It was our duty to support him and his family by all means.” The Sanatan Sanstha issued a statement: “We have only one demand. The police officers concerned, who had persecuted innocents such as Sadhvi Pradnya Singh, Col Purohit, by hatching a conspiracy against them should be severely punished. The day this happens would be the day of true justice.”

Now, if Lt Col Purohit is indeed innocent and telling the truth to the Court, the Abhinav Bharat, Sanatan Sanstha etc are terrorist, anti-national outfits – why, then are these anti-national terrorists praising someone who spied on them to expose them? If Lt Col Purohit is indeed a hero to Abhinav Bharat and Sanatan Sanstha, then he is also a terrorist seeking to overthrow secular India and achieve Hindu Rashtra by violent means.

Further, an inquiry, conducted by the Directorate General of Military Intelligence found that “the officer is highly indoctrinated, deals with illegal proliferation of weapons and hiding facts”. The inquiry report also said that his wife, Aparna Purohit, “revealed that her husband has deep hatred for Islam and he may be involved in activities directed against them”. The enquiry stated that his “extreme religious mindset and attempt to purchase semi-auto carbine from… a retired AEC officer settled in Pachmarhi was revealed”. The enquiry also found that since the media had already begun reporting on Sadhvi Pragya’s arrest, Lt Col Purohit had taken steps to protect himself: “His close associates were told to switch off mobile no. and take new sim.”

It is telling that the TV channels that are propaganda lapdogs of the Government hailed Purohit as a hero without asking the above questions about why he was also a hero to the very same terrorists he was supposedly infiltrating.

It is important to demand, in the wake of murders like that of Dabholkar, Pansare, Kalburgi and Lankesh, that arms training and military training camps and institutions by saffron organizations be banned and the extent of their terror network be probed and dismantled. 

Liberation Archive