Verdict of Acquittal- Who Wins and Who Loses?
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Verdict of Acquittal- Who Wins and Who Loses?

Author: Thamanna Abdul Latheef calender  17 Apr 2018

Verdict of Acquittal- Who Wins and Who Loses?

Humanity is dying a slow death and as a result, people are no longer afraid to rape, murder, assault and vandalize public properties on the ground of religion and community despite the fact that the country is acknowledged for its “Unity in Diversity”.

Today, we have witnessed yet another case of Hyderabad Mecca Masjid Bomb Blast Case 2007 where all five accused were acquitted due to lack of evidence. Mostly, the functioning of law and order in our country is indeed very sluggish; a reason why people don’t hesitate to commit heinous crimes. Even if the cases are under trial, the prolonged time to pass a final verdict has abated the faith and power of judiciary in its people.  In a way or other, we do witness people who are accused of various crimes being acquitted by different courts after elongated years of trial.

The Background

 The blast at the historic Mecca Masjid in Hyderabad on May 18, 2007 during Friday prayers had left nine dead and 58 injured. After an initial investigation by the local police, 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 from the CBI in 2011.

Ten people allegedly belonging to Right-wing organizations 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.

Today, a special NIA court in Hyderabad has acquitted all five accused in the 2007 Mecca Masjid bomb blast case including Swami Aseemanand due to lack of evidence. 

The Fact File

  • A total of 226 witnesses were examined during the trial and as many as 411 documents exhibited. However, only five among the arrested - Devendra Gupta, Lokesh Sharma, Swami Aseemanand alias Naba Kumar Sarkar, Bharat Mohanlal Rateshwar alias Bharat Bhai and Rajendra Chowdhary - faced trial in the case.
  • Aseemanand was first arrested by the CBI in 2010. The charge sheet said he made a confessional statement before a metropolitan magistrate in Delhi. He had allegedly disclosed the conspiracy behind the bomb blasts in different places, including Mecca Masjid. Aseemanand allegedly retracted the statement later.
  • The "confession" was among the documents that were reported missing last month.
  • The CBI in 2010 said Hindu right-wing group Abhinav Bharat was behind the blast. According to the charge sheet, the accused were "angered by terrorist attacks committed on Hindus and their temples" and wanted to "avenge" them by attacking Muslim areas and places of worship.
  • Ten persons, all members of Abhinav Bharat, including Nabakumar Sirkar alias Swami Aseemanand; Devender Gupta; Lokesh Sharma alias Ajay Tiwari, Lakshman Das Maharaj, Mohanlal Rateshwar and Rajender Chowdhary were named as accused in the case.
  • Two other accused - Sandeep V Dange and Ramchandra Kalsangra -- have been absconding while another accused and RSS functionary, Sunil Joshi, was shot when the case was being investigated.
  • Swami Aseemanand and Bharat Mohanlal Rateshwar are out on bail while three others have been lodged at the Central prison in Hyderabad under judicial remand.
  • In March 2017, a court in Rajasthan had sentenced Devendra Gupta and others to life in jail in the Ajmer Dargah blast case.

Surprisingly, reacting to the acquittals today, former Home Ministry officer RVS Mani said, "I had expected it." He claimed that "all the pieces of evidence were engineered" and that "there was no Hindu terror angle".

The whole case seems to be unfortunately twisted with the help of those people who are in power. How shameful it is to realize that the law and order took ample of time just to acquit all the accused ones!! Why there is no question on the credibility of the investigation agencies so far as the case got nullified due to lack of evidence? Where did all the pieces of evidence go? Who is betraying the public; the judiciary or the ones who govern us? Be it any crime, why criminals aren’t punished yet in many cases? How could a case of terror just go in vain? India, Its time to think where do we stand as a country and how much our silence is afflicting us!!! Speak up because your voice is powerful. 

#RaiseYourVoiceAgainstSocialInjustice.

By: Thamanna Abdul Latheef C

thamanna@molitics.in

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