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Mumbai blasts: 3 get life term, Nachan awarded 10 yrs in jail

Mumbai blasts: 3 get life term, Nachan awarded 10 yrs in jail
Key accused Saquib Nachan has been awarded a 10-year jail term.

Special POTA Judge PR Deshmukh said convict Muzammil Ansari (who had planted the bombs) will undergo imprisonment till the end of his life.

“I am of the view that to award capital punishment to Ansari in the present case just falls short of the rarest of the rare case. Therefore, I am not inclined to endorse the punishment of death sentence to Ansari,” Deshmukh observed.

The judge said if a person is hanged then within a fraction of a second, his life comes to an end and he does not realise or feel the mental, emotional and physical agony, which victims of the crime or dependents of deceased have suffered or are suffering.

Two other convicts who were granted life are Farhaan Khot and Wahid Ansari. Six others were awarded various jail terms ranging from 2-10 years.

The court ordered that 75 per cent of the fine amount (Rs 9.45 lakh) recovered (from the convicts) would go to the District Legal Services Authority, while the rest would go to the Indian Railways as compensation towards the damages caused to Railway on account of Mulund (blast) incident.

“As far as compensation is to be paid to the victims or their dependents in the case of death (is concerned), there is no sufficient material on record, though some injured witnesses have admitted about the receipt of compensation from the Railway department. Hence, there is a difficulty in awarding compensation to the victims of incidents and dependents,” the court said.

However, it directed the DLSA, Mumbai, decides the quantum of compensation to be awarded to the victims and dependents and accordingly pay it. On Tuesday, the court had reserved its verdict on the quantum of sentence to the 10 persons convicted for their role in the multiple blasts.

On March 29, the court had convicted key accused Saquib Nachan, Ateef Mulla, Hasib Mulla, Ghulam Kotal, Mohammed Kamil, Noor Malik, Anwar Ali Khan, Farhaan Khot, Wahid Ansari and Muzammil Ansari in the case.

Twelve people were killed in Mulund train blasts on March 13, 2003. On December 6, 2002, several persons were injured in a blast at McDonald’s at the Mumbai Central station, while a person had died in a blast in a market in Vile Parle (East) on January 27, 2003. 

According to prosecution, Muzammil Ansari, who holds an engineering degree, had planted the bombs. He planted the bombs along with Tahir Janab Ansari, a bomb expert, and was active in placing crude bombs in trains in different parts of the country in 1993.

Wahid, according to prosecution, allowed his clinic to be used for assembling the bombs. The forensic reports confirmed that the traces from the clinic matched with the traces in explosion site.

As for Khot, the police recovered live hand grenades, 250 bomb casings and bomb chemicals from a well in Padga (in Thane) after he led the cops to that spot. While Nachan was the key conspirator.

During the course of arguments on the sentencing, Special Public Prosecutor Rohini Salian had demanded capital punishment for Muzammil Ansari.
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