A special court in Hyderabad today acquitted all the accused in the case of the 2007 Mecca Masjid blast which claimed nine lives.
A total of 10 persons allegedly belonging to right-wing organisations were named as the accused in the case. Only five of them Devendra Gupta, Lokesh Sharma, Swami Aseemanand alias Naba Kumar Sarkar, Bharat Mohanlal Rateshwar alias Bharat Bhai and Rajendra Chowdhary – were arrested and faced trial in the case.
The National Investigation Agency (NIA) took over the case from the CBI in 2011.
Here’s a list of who said what about the acquittal:
NIA: “We will examine the court judgment after we get a copy of the same and decide further course of action.”
Asaduddin Owaisi, AIMIM chief: “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.”
“NIA is a deaf and blind TOTA (parrot), they didn’t appeal against bail given to accused, witness turned hostile after June 2014 IO (investigating officer) couldn’t give proper statement so everything was done to fail the victims upshot is our fight against terrorism is weakened after today’s acquittals.”
Ghulam Nabi Azad, Congress spokesman : “NIA functions under BJP government, faith in agencies is lost.”
Sambit Patra, BJP spokesman: “BJP does not comment on the judgement of the court. We don’t comment on working of the Indian judiciary. It’s an independent body. Congress said the court was right at the time of 2G verdict, but is labelling it wrong today.”
RVS Mani, former under-secretary, Ministry of Home Affairs: “I had expected it. All the pieces of evidence were engineered, otherwise, there was no Hindu terror angle…People who perpetrated the attack were protected through misuse of the Agency(NIA), this is what is alarming. How do you compensate those who suffered and were maligned? Will Congress or anyone else who propagated this theory compensate them?”>
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