Lt-Col Srikant Prasad Purohit, an accused in the 2008 Malegaon blast case, had organised a terror training camp in Madhya Pradesh where he imparted arms training to 40 semi-literate youths in 2007, reports said citing ATS officials. However, the ATS did not book Purohit for “organising a terror camp” saying the sections for such a crime under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) did not exist at the time of Purohit’s arrest. ”Purohit organised a terror training camp near Pachmarhi in MP for semi-literate Hindus. The recruits were taught how to make firearms, assemble and operate them for ‘self-defence’ in the 15-day session. However, the intention was not self-defence but to disrupt communal harmony,” an ATS officer reportedly said.
The ATS however did not have details of all 40 youths who attended the camp. “Purohit held several meetings, terror training sessions and indoctrination programmes where he is suspected to have brainwashed and trained over 200 youths. ATS officers told me that they were still looking for them,” said minister of state (home) Arif Naseem Khan.