A Special Terrorism and Disruptive Activities Act (TADA) court on Friday found Abu Salem and Mustafa Dossa guilty of criminal conspiracy charges. Along with the two gqangsters, Firoz Khan, Karimullah Khan, Taher Merchant were also found guilty of conspiracy charges leveled against them. Accused Riaz Siddiqui was convicted under Section 3 (3) of TADA Act but was acquitted all other charges. According to Mumbai TADA court, prosecution failed to prove charges of conspiracy against Siddiqui. All the accused were acquitted of charges of waging war against the nation. The Court has set the next hearing date on June 20, to decide the date for argument on quantum of sentence.
The under trials, who were arrested between 2003 and 2010, including Dossa, Salem, Firoz Khan, Taher Merchant, Riyaz Siddiqui and Abdul Qayyum, were tried separately by the court. They were facing multiple charges which included criminal conspiracy, waging war against the Government of India and murder.
257 people died while 713 others were injured after a series of bomb blasts rocked Mumbai City on March 12, 1993. Underworld don Dawood Ibrahim along with Tiger Memon and his brother Yakub Memon were alleged to be the prime conspirators in the case.
1993 Mumbai Serial blasts verdict highlights:
2:06 pm: “We are very positive and we respect TADA court’s decision. Decisions are in our favour,” Tushar Deshmukh, who lost his mother in 1993 Mumbai blasts told news agency ANI.
1:30 pm: Deepak Salve, Special CBI Counsel, spoke to media and said that there was no evidence of conspiracy charges against Riaz Siddiqui, hence he was only convicted under TADA act. The Court has set the next hearing date on June 20, to decide the date for argument on quantum of sentence, Salve added.
1:20 pm: Meanwhile, Delhi Police arrested a shooter, who had fired on his sister and wife was also involved in a number of cases. The shooter claimed to have worked for Abu Salem, who was found guilty of conspiracy charges on Friday by TADA court, news agency ANI reported.
1:17 pm: Abdul Qayuum acquitted in 1993 Mumbai serial blasts case. He is to be released from prison on a PR bond of Rs 1 lakh. All accused acquitted of the charge of waging war against the nation. The court felt that the accused were fighting for a community which made the court people believe that they were innocent of charges of waging war against the country.
1:15 pm: Accused Riaz Siddiqui was convicted under Section 3 (3) of TADA Act but was acquitted all other charges. Mumbai TADA court believes that prosecution failed to prove charges of conspiracy against Siddiqui.
1:00 pm: Abu Salem was just pronounced as guilty under criminal conspiracy charges and explosives act. It is the biggest accusation, as well he could be given death sentence under TADA Act. But he cannot be hanged till death because of the extradition treaty signed with Portugal. Salem accused of going to Gujarat to receive arms, collecting nine AK 56 rifles, 100 grenades, cartridges. Some of the arms were delivered to Sanjay Dutt. He has always maintained that he never knew that there were guns in the van he was driving to Mumbai.
12:55 pm: Karimullah Khan pronounced guilty of conspiracy charges in 1993 Mumbai serial blast case. Arrested in 20008 Karimullah Khan was part of landing of arms in Shekhadi. Karimulla was at a meeting in an Alibag hotel where tiger Memon spoke on Babri demolition and about atrocities against Muslims.
12:40 pm: Taher Merchant also found guilty of conspiracy meetings. The former hawala operator, was accused of organising conspiracy meetings prior to Mumbai blasts. Merchant had contacts with ISI and Pakistan. He organised funds for arms, arranged videos of provocative speeches and arranged for visas for co-accused in 1993 Mumbai serial blasts case. At least 15 accused returned to Merchant’s houses in Dubai after receiving training in Pakistan.
12:38 pm: Firoz Abdul Rashid Khan was also found guilty of conspiracy charges in 1993 Mumbai serial blasts case. Accused Firoz Khan convicted under charges of conspiracy and murder under sections of IPC, TADA and Explosives ACT. He was accused of actively participating in landing of arms at Dighi jetty. Arrested in 2008, Khan was part of landings of arms in Shekhadi.
12:28 pm: Gangster Mustafa Dossa was found guilty of conspiracy in 1993 Mumbai serial blasts case. According to reports, the charges can attract the death penalty against Dossa. What needs to be remembered here is that Yakub Memon was also charged under similar charges. Mustafa has also been found guilty of planning and carrying out the attacks, as per the reports. He was also found guilty of supplying arms in Mumbai after blasts with the help of his brother.
12:20 pm: Recap: Bollywood actor Sanjay Dutt was one of the first ones to get arrested in relation with the case on charges of illegal possession of arms a 9 mm pistol and AK-56 rifle and an ammunition. The actor, after his arrest on April 19, 2013, confessed about possession of arms and destroying it and was later granted bail by Bombay High Court. Actor Sanjay Dutt was convicted in the case and was awarded a prison sentence of five years in March 2013.
12:05 pm: Recap: Apart from Mustafa Dossa and Abu Salem, the other convicts awaiting verdict today include Riyaz Siddiqui, who was charged with criminal conspiracy and offences under TADA to cause the blasts. He was also charged for bringing illegal arms to Mumbai from Gujarat along with Salem. Qayyum Shaikh was charged with criminal conspiracy to cause the blasts. He was also accused of procuring arms and grenades to India with the help of Anees Ibrahim.
11:53 am: Kirti Ajmera, one of the survivors of the blast at Bombay Stock Exchange, spoke to news agency ANI, and said that justice should no longer be delayed. “Justice delayed is justice denied. We have suffered a lot till now,” he said.
11:45 am: Former Supreme Court judge, Justice (Retd) B N Srikrishna, who was appointed by PV Narsimha government to head the judicial inquiry commission report on the blasts, in an interview to media reporters said his recommendations on the case were not implemented by the committee. In an interview to News 18, he also questioned the manner in which the investigations in the case were carried out. “Most of the cases they had investigated either had no evidence or were true but undetected. Is this the way you investigate cases? And when questioned, it was stated that it was not possible to find out anything more,” Justice Srikrishna said.
11:38 am: According to news agency ANI, gangster Abu Salem was brought to TADA court on Friday, where the judgment is likely to be announced soon.
11:30 am: Recap: Yakub Memon was given a death sentence after he was found guilty in case related to 1993 Mumbai serial bomb blasts. Memon in 2006. In 2010, the Supreme Court upheld the decision. His repeated petitions in the court seeking review of the decisions was dismissed by Supreme Court. His mercy pleas were also rejected by President Pranab Mukherjee. Memon was finally hanged to death on June 30, 2015.
11:20 am: Here is a little reminder of the court’s first set of judgment in the case: The trial court ordered death sentence of 12 convicts, including Yakub Memon on September 12, 2006, giving life sentence to 20 others. Bollywood actor Sanjay Dutt, son of actor-turned-politician Sunil Dutt, was also given a sentence of 5 years in the case for illegal possession of arms. In March 2013, the apex court announced its decision to uphold the death sentence of Yakub Memon, but commuted death sentence of 10 convicts to life sentence. It also upheld the life sentence of 16 out of 18 convicts.
11:15 am: Deepak Salve, Special SBI counsel spoke to News X, said Doussa was the initiator, according to the case, of the conspiracy and along with his brother Mohammed Dousa, called the first conspiracy meeting in Dubai. He also added that several gangsters from Mumbai including Dawood Ibrahim attended the meeting. “They conspired to have the bomb blasts in Mumbai and planning of riots also for which they decided to send the arms and ammunition to Mumbai.” He further added that he expects the judgment to be in their favour.
10:55 am: Mustafa Dossa, one of the accused in 1993 Mumbai serial blasts case, was seen leaving for TADA court from Arthur Road Jail in a police van, news agency ANI reported. The court is expected to convene at 11 am to pronounce its judgement in the case.
— ANI (@ANI_news) June 16, 2017
10:50 am: To read the timeline of events and court proceedings after 1993 Mumbai serial blasts, click here
10:40 am: P S Pasricha, Former DGP of Maharashtra spoke to News 18, recounting the day of the blast. He said after the initial reports of an explosion from an unspecified area, he did not expect it to be a bomb blast. “I thought gas cylinders bursting was common those days. So we thought it was one of those. Our people said that we are handling the traffic and we’ll let you know if there is any difficulty.” Pasricha added that he figured that something “very serious” was going on when reports of another blast came from near Air India. “A huge noise I heard. The whole wall shook. Even I almost shook.”Describing the situation in Mumbai after the blasts, Pasricha said that there was panic and numbness all around the city. “There was panic. People were benumbed. Nobody knew what is to be done,” he said.
Former Director General of Mumbai Police, PS Pasricha, recounts the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts pic.twitter.com/aXFdsMehQS
— News18 (@CNNnews18) June 16, 2017
10:30 am: To read everything you need to know about the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts case, click here
10:25 am: Salem was arrested in Portugal in 2002 and was later extradited to India in 2005. He was sentenced to life imprisonment in another case. He is currently lodged in Taloja Central Jail in Raigad. According to CBI, Dossa was extradited in 2003 from UAE. The court ordered him to undergo a separate trial for several charges including conspiracy and transportation of arms.
10:00 am: The TADA court is likely to announce its judgment by 11 am. The seven men, who were arrested between 2003 and 2010, almost at the fag end of the first trial, form the second set of accused in the blasts case. The court ordered for them to be tried separately.