Mecca Masjid Blast Case: All Accused Acquitted

Mecca Masjid Blast Case: All Accused AcquittedHyderabad: A special National Investigation Agency (NIA) court today acquitted all the five accused, including Swami Assemanand, in the 2007 Mecca Masjid blast case citing lack of evidence.

Eleven years after the powerful explosion killed nine people and injured more than 50 during the Friday prayers near the iconic Charminar here, the court held that none of the charges framed against the accused were proved.

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.

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