Samjhauta Express
Samjhauta Express (Representational Picture)Wiki Commons / Najanaja

Samjhauta Blast accused Swami Aseemanand was granted bail on Thursday, after he had recently moved the Punjab and Haryana High Court with a bail plea.

Aseemanad is the key accused in the Samjhauta Express blasts of 2007 that left 68 dead, with most casualties being Pakistani nationals. In his bail application, Aseemanad appealed that there was no evidence against him and that he has been in custody for four years already.

"Keeping me in custody for so many years would be injustice to me," he was quoted saying by Zee News.

Aseemanad has been arrested by the National Investigation Agency on 26 December 2012, and charged under Section 120-B (conspiracy), 302 (murder), 307 (attempt to murder), 124-A (sedition), 438 (punishment for mischief with intent to destroy a decked vessel with explosive substance) and 440 (mischief committed after preparation made for causing death), of the IPC.

Interestingly, the NIA had earlier rejected Aseemanand's bail plea, arguing that he could tamper with investigation, which would be detrimental to the prosecution.

The bomb blasts, that went off in two coaches of the Lahore-bound Samjhauta Express on 18 February 2007, had highlighted the issue of saffron terrorism in the country. Aseemanand had confessed in court in December 2011 to his role in the terror attacks and even implicated the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), but later retracted his confessions.

A special NIA court in Panchkula had framed charges against Aseemanand, Kamal Chauhan, Lokesh Sharma and Rajinder Chaudhary this January for the act.