All five accused walk free in Mecca Masjid blast case
NIA court acquits Swami Aseemanand, others for lack of evidence
All the five accused, including Naba Kumar Sarkar alias Swami Aseemanand, in the sensational case of a blast inside the historic Mecca Masjid in the Old City of Hyderabad, were acquitted by the NIA Special Court on Monday. Nine persons were killed in the blast on May 18, 2007.
Amid unprecedented security at the Nampally Criminal Court Complex here, the Fourth Additional Metropolitan Sessions Judge K. Ravinder Reddy said the accused were being set free due to lack of evidence.
Besides accused one, two, six, seven and eight — Devender Guptha, Lokesh Sharma, Bharat Mohanlal Riteshwar and Rajender Chowdary respectively — were present in the court hall when the verdict was pronounced. The fifth accused — Sunil Joshi of Madhya Pradesh, former RSS pracharak — was murdered as per the chargesheet filed by the NIA.
Accused three and four, Sandeep V. Dange and Ramchandra Kalsangra respectively, both from Madhya Pradesh and RSS activists, were still ‘absconding’, the chargesheet said. Investigation against accused nine and 10, Tejram Parmar and Amith Chowhan respectively, was going on.
Around 10.30 a.m., journalists assembled outside the court hall, were sent out on the judge’s instructions. The judge gave his verdict around noon.