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Friday 16 Jun 2017 11.20 AM

93 blasts case: Verdict in 2nd leg of trial today

93 blast case, Verdict, Trial,

Mumbai : A special TADA court here is likely to pronounce tomorrow its judgement in the second leg of the trial in 1993 Mumbai serial blasts case involving seven accused including extradited gangster Abu Salem. The dastardly attacks had left 257 people dead, 713 seriously injured and destroyed properties worth Rs 27 crore. In the first leg of the trial that concluded in 2007, the TADA court had convicted 100 accused in the case, while 23 people were acquitted. The trial of the seven accused -- Abu Salem, Mustafa Dossa, Karimullah Khan, Firoz Abdul Rashid Khan, Riyaz Siddiqui, Tahir Merchant and Abdul Quayyum -- were separated from the main case as they were arrested at the time of conclusion of the main trial. Salem was accused of transporting weapons from Gujarat to Mumbai.

He also handed over to actor Sanjay Dutt, who was an accused in the case for illegally possessing weapons, AK 56 rifles, 250 bullets and some hand grenades at his residence on January 16, 1993. Two days later on January 18, 1993, Salem and two others went to Dutts house and got back two rifles and some rounds. The court had dropped certain charges against Salem in 2013 after the investigating agency --CBI-- moved a plea, saying those charges were against the extradition treaty between India and Portugal. Mustafa Dossa allegedly masterminded the landing of explosives including RDX in India and sent some youth to Pakistan to acquire arms training. The court, in all, recorded statements of around 750 prosecution witnesses and 50 witnesses. Three accused including Salem had confessed to their crime during investigations carried out by the CBI over the years into the blasts case.

Though the hearing in the case began in 2007, it was delayed as three petitions were pending with the Supreme Court, one each filed by Dossa and Salem, and another by CBI. The trial resumed in 2012 and concluded this March. The case (involving the seven accused) was first heard by judge Pramod Kode, who had also delivered the judgement in the first leg of the trial and convicted 100 accused and acquitted 23 in 2007. Later, judge D U Mullah presided over the TADA court, and the case is now being heard by judge G A Sanap. It was during the trial in 2013 that the Supreme Court pronounced a judgement on appeal filed by all the accused wherein key conspirator Yakub Memons death sentence was confirmed, while that of others (all bomb planters) were commuted to life imprisonment.

Sanjay Dutt and many others surrendered before the TADA court here in May 2013 after the apex court upheld their conviction. Yakub Memon was executed on July 30, 2015 after his several pleas seeking clemency were rejected, including the post-midnight hearing by The blasts took place at Bombay Stock Exchange, Katha Bazaar, Lucky petrol pump near Sena Bhavan, opposite Passport office near Century Bazaar, Fishermens colony at Mahim Causeway, at basement of Air India Building, Zaveri Bazaar, Hotel Sea Rock, Plaza Theatre, Centaur Hotel (Juhu), Sahar Airport (Bay no.54) and Centaur Hotel (near airport). This was the first ever terrorist attack in the world where RDX (Research Department Explosive i.e cyclotrimethylene trinitramine) was used on such a large scale after the Second World War. PTI

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Friday 16 Jun 2017 11.20 AM
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