Home ministry decries Muslim youths' arrest

An embarrassed Union Home Ministry on Thursday described as “extremely unfortunate” the arrest of nine innocent Muslim youths by the investigating agencies on the fake charge of carrying out 2006 Malegaon blasts outside a mosque that had left 37 dead and more than 125 injured.

The National Investigation Agency (NIA) filed a charge sheet on Wednesday blaming a Hindu group for the Malegaon blasts, differing with the previous investigations by Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad and the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) that implicated Muslim youths in the blast case.

“The Malegaon investigation shows that the government's decision to hand over the case to NIA was correct. It was extremely unfortunate that innocent people were arrested and charged. We will take all necessary action to ensure this is not repeated,” Minister of State for Home R P N Singh told reporters in North Block when asked about his response to the NIA charge sheet.

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