Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Ahmedabad blasts case: 38 convicts sentenced to death, 11 to life imprisonment

A special court designated for the speedy trial of the 2008 Ahmedabad serial bomb blasts case on Friday sentenced 38 of the 49 convicts to death under provisions of UAPA and IPC 302.

The 11 others were sentenced to life imprisonment until death.

All 49 convicts are Muslims hail from different states in India. Sources close to the sentenced said they will approach higher court to challenge the verdict.

This is the highest number of convicts to be sentenced to death in a single case in India’s legal history.

On 8 February, the Special Judge, AR Patel had declared 49 of the total 78 accused as guilty under various offences of the Indian Penal Code, including for murder, sedition and waging war against the state, as well as under offences of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, Explosive Substance Act.

One of the convicted was also found guilty of offences under the Arms Act.

While pronouncing the judgement, the judge also awarded a compensation of Rs 1 lakh to those who had died in the blasts.

As many as 22 bombs went off in Ahmedabad on 26 July 2008, killing 56 persons and leaving around 200 injured.

In emails that were sent to some media houses, the Indian Mujahideen, an organisation that had not been heard of until then, claimed responsibility for the attacks.

Earlier at least 35 FIRs were filed in Ahmedabad, where the blasts took place, and in Surat, where the police had recovered bombs from different locations after the blasts in Ahmedabad. The trial began after as many as 35 cases were merged and consolidated into one case.

On 8 February, while delivering verdict after 13 years of trial, the Judge had declared 28 of the total 78 accused as acquitted.

11 of the 28 acquitted are out of jail as of date, while the 17 others continue to be in judicial custody owing to their requirement in other criminal cases.

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