5 Mecca Masjid blast accused acquitted, Judge resigns after delivering judgement
Hyderabad: A special anti-terror court today acquitted Swami Aseemanand and four others accused in the Mecca Masjid blast case, on the ground that the prosecution had failed to prove “even a single allegation” against them.
Shortly after pronouncing the judgement in the Mecca Masjid blast case, K Ravinder Reddy, the special judge for NIA cases, gave his resignation citing personal reasons.
The four centuries-old Mecca mosque here was rocked by a blast that killed 9 and wounded several dozen when a large number of people had gathered at the mosque on May 18, 2007 for Friday prayers.
Beside Aseemanand, those acquitted in the Mecca masjid blast case are — Devendra Gupta, Lokesh Sharma, Bharat Mohanlal Rateshwar alias Bharat Bhai and Rajendra Choudhary. Two other accused in this case – Sandeep V Dange and Ramchandra Kalsangra – have been absconding, while another accused Sunil Joshi was murdered in Dewas Madhya Pradesh. Investigation is continuing against two others. In January 2014, the NIA court in Bhopal had pulled up the NIA for failure to file the challan in the RSS Pracharak Sunil Joshi murder case. At that time, NIA had told the court that the Challan was not being filed as investigations were continuing in this case. Sunil Joshi was gunned down at Dewas in December 2007.
Following today’s verdict, the BJP leaders are claiming that they have exposed the Congress party’s “Hindu terror and saffron terror” theory and appeasement politics. The Congress on the other side is questioning the working of NIA.