Two convicts get 10 years RI and an another got 7 years RI in the Gandhi Maidan serial blast case

Punishment pronounced after eight  years of the incident

By Rajiv Ranjan

Patna: In a major judgement in the serial blast case at Patna junction and in Gandhi Maidan on October 27, 2013 during Hunkar rally of Mr Narendra Modi,  the then Prime Minister candidate of NDA from Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) fold, the special National Investigating Agency (NIA) court on Monday awarded death sentence to four , rigorous life imprisonment to two, ten years rigorous imprisonment to another two and seven years rigorous imprisonment to an another convict. 

The special judge of NIA Gurvinder Singh Malhotra pronounced the quantum of punishment in a jam packed court room where the convicts were brough from Beur central jail amid tight security arrangements for their physical production.

The court heard both the parties on the issue of quantum of punishment before awarding the same to the convicts.

During hearing, the special prosecutor of NIA Lalan Prasad Sinha prayed the court for stern punishment to the convicts whereas the defence councel
Syed Imran Gani requested the court to consider the socio economic condition of the convicts while pronouncing the judgement on the quantum of punishment.

The court observing the crime of the four convicts as most henius, awarded death sentence to the convicts Imtiyaz Ansari, Haider Ali, Numan and Mujibullah under various acts of Indian penal code .

 The court was soft towards Umar Siddiqui and Azharuddin Siddiqui as both had admitted their crime before the NIA during investigation and the judge awarded rigorous life imprisonment to both.

 The court pronounced ten years rigorous imprisonment to Ahmad Hussain under explosive Act and fined him with Rs ten thousand. The convict Firoz Aslam got ten years rigorous imprisonment for taking up illegal activities.
An another convict Iftekhar Alam was awarded with seven years rigorous imprisonment along with Rs ten thousand fine under setion 201 of the IPC.

Earlier, the judge after completing the hearing on October 27 had convicted nine out of ten accused in the case investigated by National Investigating Agency (NIA).

It may be recalled that during the Hunkar rally of Mr Narendra Modi on October 27, 2013 which was held in the lead-up to the 2014 Lok Sabha general elections a powerful bomb blast took place in the Sulabh shauchalay on platform number 10 of Karbigahia at Patna railway junction . This blast was followed by serial blasts in the historical Gandhi Maidan just ahead of the address of Mr Modi and several stalwarts if BJP. In this blast six people were killed and 89 got injured.

The NIA, which took up the investigation  in November 2013 had filed chargesheet against 11 people in 2014. Trial of 10 accused were held before the special Court of NIA in Patna Civil Court whereas the trial of a minor was conducted by the Juvenile Court.

The prosecution had presented 187 witnesses during trial of the case.

In 2013 the then Prime Minister candidate of NDA Narendra Modi who was Chief Minister of Gujarat at that time had addressed the Hunkar rally.

Soon after the blast Imtiyaz Ahmad who was arrested from platform number 10 at Patna junction by the Patna Police when a bomb exploded accidently in a wash room prior to the serial blast during the Hunkar rally  had revealed during interrogation that terrorists belonging to Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) and Indian Mijahidiin ( IM) had engineered the serial bomb explosion at Hunkar rally and at Bodhgaya.

A serial blast had also occurred on 7 July 2013 in and around the Mahabodhi Temple complex, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Bodh Gaya of Gaya district.