The Rajasthan High Court on Tuesday granted bail to former state minister Mahipal Maderna and six other accused in the Bhanwari Devi murder case of 2011, The Indian Express reported. As a result of Tuesday’s order, 15 of the 16 accused in the case have been now received bail.
One accused, Indra Bishnoi, has not yet filed a bail application.
Devi, a nurse and midwife, had disappeared in September 2011 after a CD was found that allegedly showed Maderna in “a compromising position” with her. The 36-year-old nurse was reportedly abducted from Jodhpur’s Bilara area and later murdered. The Central Bureau of Investigation found the burnt remains of her body in a canal four months after her murder.
At the time of her alleged abduction, Congress leader Maderna was Rajasthan’s water resources minister. Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot had sacked him after the CD came into the public domain, according to NDTV.
Maderna was already out of prison as the Rajasthan High Court had granted him interim bail on medical grounds in September 2020, reported The Times of India.
On July 27, the Supreme Court had granted bail to one of the accused Parasram Vishnoi, noting that the accused had already spent over ten years in jail. In Tuesday’s hearing, the petitioner’s counsel argued that the Supreme Court’s order had set a precedent for granting bail to the other accused, NDTV reported.