Mecca Masjid blast: NIA court acquits Aseemanand, 4 others
HYDERABAD: A special court in Hyderabad on Monday acquitted for lack of evidence five men, including former members of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), who were accused of being involved in the 2007 Mecca Masjid blast that claimed the lives of nine people.
Indicted by India’s federal counter-terror bureau National Investigation Agency (NIA) in 2013, the men were accused of having plotted the attack as part of a Hindu extremist conspiracy, an allegation that immediately pitted the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) against the then ruling Congress government.
Among them was Swami Aseemanand, who has been named in several other cases with a similar motive.
The 2007 attack took place during Friday prayers in the mosque adjacent to the historic Charminar in Hyderabad on May 18, killing nine people and leaving 58 injured.
Five others were killed in police firing in the violence that followed immediately after the blast.
In addition to Aseemanand, the men acquitted are: RSS pracharak from Rajasthan Devendra Gupta, property dealercum-rss activist from Madhya Pradesh Lokesh Sharma, Gujarat’s Bharat Mohanlal Rateshwar and a farmer from Madhya Pradesh, Rajender Chowdary.