All Accused Including Former RSS Member Acquitted In Mecca Masjid Blast
A special court in Hyderabad has acquitted all the accused in the 2007 Mecca Masjid blast for lack of substantial evidence. Among the accused, Swami Aseemanand, a former RSS member, has also been acquitted even after he had already given a signed confession.
According to NDTV, the National Investigation Agency (NIA), country’s top terror body, failed to prove the accused guilty, the court stated.
What happened in 2007?
On May 18, 2007, nine were killed and over 50 people were injured in a blast that happened during Friday prayers in the historic Mecca Masjid in Hyderabad. The local police were conducting the investigation initially and later the case got transferred to the CBI. Then the case was finally transferred to the NIA in 2011.
Ten people allegedly belonging to right-wing organisations were named as accused in the case. One of the accused, Sunil Joshi of Madhya Pradesh, a former RSS pracharak, was murdered. Besides Swami Aseemanand, Devendra Gupta, Lokesh Sharma, Bharat Mohanlal Rateshwar alias Bharat Bhai and Rajendra Chowdhary also faced trial in the case.
Two other accused are still absconding. A total of 226 people were questioned and 441 documents were submitted regarding the blast.
What people said about the acquittals
“We will examine the court judgment after we get a copy of the same and decide further course of action,” told the NIA.
Asaduddin Owaisi, AIMIM chief said, “Justice has not been done, NIA and (Narendra) Modi govt didn’t even appeal against bail that was given to accused within 90 days…this was a completely biased investigation which will weaken our resolve to fight terrorism…9 people died many (were) injured.”
Ghulam Nabi Azad, Congress spokesman said “NIA functions under BJP government, faith in agencies is lost.”
What was in Aseemanand’s confession?
Aseemanand, who is actually Naba Kumar Sarkar, was born in Hooghly, West Bengal. He started working full time for “Adivasi Kalyan Ashram” of RSS in Birbhum, Bankura and Purulia districts of West Bengal from 1977, as reported by The Hindu.
Along with the Mecca Masjid blast, he has also been accused of Ajmer, Malegaon and Samjhauta Express blast cases. In 2017, he was acquitted in the Ajmer blast case.
In his confession, he said that along with other radical Hindu right activists, including senior RSS leader Indresh Kumar, slain Sangh pracharak Sunil Joshi, and Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur was involved in a series of blasts like the Ajmer blast, Samjhauta Express blast to fight against the terrorism spread by Islam.
He even mentioned in his confession that the reason why he chose the Mecca Masjid was because Nizam of Hyderabad wanted to go to Pakistan during the partition.