Judge who gave Mecca Masjid blast verdict resigns

Judge who gave Mecca Masjid blast verdict resigns

Ravindra Reddy quitted the post hours after acquitting all five Hindu activists accused in the 2011 bomb blast at the historic place which had left nine worshippers dead. Reasons for his resignation are not exactly known.

The special judge handling the case being prosecuted by the National Investigation Agency gave the verdict on Monday that the NIA had failed to offer cogent evidence against any of the five accused, and thus they will walk free.

According to reports, special NIA judge Ravinder Reddy has submitted his resignation to the Andhra Pradesh chief justice on Monday.

NIA special public prosecutor N Harinath, engaged for the 2007 Mecca Masjid blast case, was associated with the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) as a student in Hyderabad and said Tuesday that he has continued to help the RSS-affiliated student body organise events.

Aseemanand was acquitted past year in the 2007 bombing of the Ajmer shrine in Rajasthan. Neither for those who suffered the loss of loved ones, nor for the country's security establishment which must find and ensure punishment for the villains if they are indeed not the five accused as the court has held. The bombing was initially probed by the Hyderabad Police and then handed over to CBI, which filed the first charge sheet in 2010.




In addition to the witnesses turning hostile, Swami Aseemanand who had issued a confessional statement retracted the same before the court. The NIA did not challenge the acquittals in the Ajmer case.

The investigating agency, on its part, has declined to comment on the empanelment of Harinath, who told the daily that he did not face any pressure from anyone to dilute the case. They didn't even challenge the court's bail order to two accused - Devender Gupta and Lokesh Sharma - in the Mecca Masjid Dargah case earlier.

While Congress and Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) criticised the acquittals, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) said the verdict exposed the appeasement politics of Congress. He said that Kaleem who was in a Hyderabad jail was tortured in connection with the same case and hence he chose to spill the beans. One, Sunil Joshi, a RSS pracharak, was murdered during the course of investigation.

"I blame it entirely on the Narendra Modi government and the NIA for failing to bring the accused to book and let the criminal off".

He is facing trial in another case - the 2007 Samjhauta Express blast, where 68 people, mostly Pakistanis, were killed when the train was on its way to Lahore from Delhi.

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