The SC-appointed Special Investigation Team, probing the post-Godhra riots case, caught two of the accused persons who have been absconding in the Ode massacre case in Anand district that took place during the 2002 riots.
According to SIT officials, the duo, identified as Mohan S Patel and Nikul Ravji Pate, along with four others had jumped bail. They all went abroad and were hiding there ever since. A local court issued an arrest warrant against them.
Sources said Mohan Patel, who was hiding in Singapore and a red corner notice had been issued against him, surrendered on August 11. Sources said that three other absconders have been traced and the procedure of extradition is under way to bring them back.
The other accused Nikul, who was in London and against whom a Look-Out Notice had been issued, was detained by immigration officials at Mumbai airport. He was handed over to the SIT. He will be brought on transit remand. The duo had jumped bail after their arrest in the riot case at Malav Bhagol area of Ode town in Anand district.
In this case, three people from the minority community, including two women, had been killed on March 1, 2002. Twenty-three others were also killed by the rioters in another round of violence in the same place. In the Malav Bhagol incident, a total of 41 accused were tried and nine people convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment, while 32 were acquitted.
SIT officials said that a fresh trial will be held against the two and that, as per procedures, witnesses will be called in for cross-examination. After that the court will pronounce its verdict.