Judge in Mecca Masjid case resigns following acquittal verdict

Mecca Masjid blast accused Swami Aseemanand

All accused in 2007 Mecca Masjid blast case acquitted by special NIA court

The Mecca Masjid blast case is second among the Hindu terror cases where trial has concluded and the judgment has been pronounced, acquitting the accused.

The judge Ravinder Reddy noted - not unlike the special CBI judge in the 2-G scam case -that "the prosecution could not prove the case because no evidence was presented to prove the conspiracy" behind the blasts which killed nine persons and injured 58 others.

A total of 10 people allegedly belonging to a group called Abhinav Bharat were accused of plotting and carrying out the blasts.

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A special court, in Jaipur on March 8 past year, had acquitted Aseemanand and six others in the case of the 2007 Ajmer Dargah blast that killed three persons and injured 17.

Two of the accused-Ramchandra Kalsangra and Sandeep Dange-are absconding, while another key accused-Sunil Joshi-was shot dead while the matter was under still investigation. 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. However, the pitch was queered to some extent in the evening with special NIA judge Ravindra Reddy, who delivered the verdict, resigning under mysterious circumstances. "Besides, he added that evidence offered by Aseemanand's confession got further weakened as it was being used against a co-accused", the former NIA official said. This the second big terror case in which Aseemanand has been acquitted.

"Mission accomplished!. My congratulations to NIA for their grand success in Mecca Masjid case". The NIA challenged the bail, but he was allowed by the court to leave Hyderabad. The case was taken over by the CBI which initially investigated the case, and in 2011 the case was handed over to the NIA. "The UPA government victimised our saints". Justice hasn't been done in the case.

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Senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad also questioned the NIA's functioning.

Former NIA Director-General Sharad Kumar, who oversaw the trial in this case, refused to comment.

Taking exception to the Bollywood scriptwriter's jibe, BJP's Rao panned Akhtar for being a fan of Rahul Gandhi and asked whether he had coined the term "Hindu terror" on behalf of the Congress party.

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When the cases were taken over by NIA, the Union Home Secretary was a current member of PM Narendra Modi's council of ministers, RK Singh, handpicked for the top home ministry post by then home minister P Chidambaram. Even those who conspired will soon be exposed.

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