Mecca Masjid blast case: All accused acquitted

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A special National Investigation Agency (NIA) court today acquitted all accused due to lack of evidence in the sensational Mecca Masjid attack which was allegedly carried out by a group of right-wing terrorists 11 years ago on May 18, 2007.

The blast at the historic Mecca Masjid in Hyderabad on May 18, 2007 during Friday prayers killed nine people and left 58 others injured.

The case was initially investigated by the local police and the case was transferred to the Central Bureau Of Investigation (CBI), which filed a charge sheet. Subsequently, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) took over the case in 2011.

Ten persons allegedly belonging to right-wing organisations were named as accused in the case.

However, only five of them — Devendra Gupta, Lokesh Sharma, Swami Aseemanand alias Naba Kumar Sarkar, Bharat Mohanlal Rateshwar alias Bharat Bhai and Rajendra Chowdhary – were arrested and faced trial in the case.

Two other accused — Sandeep V Dange and Ramchandra Kalsangra — are absconding while another accused Sunil Joshi died. Investigations were continuing against two other accused.

A total of 226 witnesses were examined during the trial and as many as 411 documents were exhibited.

Swami Aseemanand and Bharat Mohanlal Rateshwar are out on bail while three others are lodged in the central prison in Hyderabad under judicial remand.

In March 2017, a court in Rajasthan had sentenced Gupta and another convict to life in jail in the Ajmer Dargah blast case.

Source: Economic Times