Five including Swami Aseemanand acquitted in year 2007 blast case

Hyderabad: Five including Swami Aseemanand are today acquitted in year 2007 Mecca Masjid blast case by a metropolitan court for NIA cases here. Those acquitted are: Devendra Gupta, Lokesh Sharma, Swami Aseemanand alias Naba Kumar Sarkar, Bharat Mohanlal Rateshwar alias Bharat Bhai and Rajendra Chowdhary. Swami Aseemanand and Bharat Mohanlal Rateshwar were out on bail, while three others were lodged in the Central prison here under judicial remand.

Aseemanand’s counsel, J P Sharma said “The prosecution failed to prove allegations against the five accused who faced trial in the case and hence the court acquitted them.”

The Mecca Masjid on May 8, 2007, during Friday prayers, had killed 9 persons and wounded 58.

The case was first probed by the local police, and later transferred to the CBI, and finally in 2011 to the NIA.

Two accused Sandeep V Dange and Ramchandra Kalsangra are absconding. Investigation is on against them. Another accused Sunil Joshi was murdered.

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