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2002 blasts case: Bail of three accused to continue

Govt approaches HC after the HC admitts state's appeal against their acquittal last year, reports Urvi Jappi .

india Updated: Jan 08, 2007 22:24 IST
Urvi Jappi

In a set back to the Maharashtra government the Bombay High Court on Monday refused to cancel bail of the three accused who were arrested for their alleged involvement in a bomb blast in a bus in December 2, 2002, which witnessed the disappearance of one of the accused Khwaja Yunus and subsequent arrest of police officers attached with the investigation.

A division bench of Justice JN Patel and Justice RS Mohite while rejecting the application by the government observed that the no case was made out for canceling bail and taking them in custody as the accused has not misused their bail conditions.

The government had approached the HC seeking cancellation of bail of three accused - Dr Abdul Mateen, Mohammed Altaf and Imran Rehman Khan - after the HC had admitted state's appeal against their acquittal last year.

On June 11, the special Prevention Of Terrorist Act (Pota) court had acquitted eight accused allegedly involved in the bomb blast in a BEST bus in suburban Ghatkopar on December 2, 2002. Two persons were killed and 49 injured in the blast. Designated judge AP Bhangale had acquitted all eight accused as the prosecution had failed to provide charges against them.

In July 2006 the government had challenged the acquittal of five of the eight accused - Dr Abdul Mateen, Mohammed Altaf, Imran Rehman Khan, Shaikh Mohammed Muzammil and Toufiq Hamid. The appeal states that the designated judge had "erred while appreciating the evidence the accused."

Public prosecutor sought that bail of three of the persons be cancelled as they were alleged of serious offence. Besides, the trial court had wrongly acquitted them without considering their confessional statements, the state contended.

However, the HC observed that the trial court had given reasonable grounds while releasing them on bail. Whether they were wrongly or rightly acquitted would be decided by the HC while hearing their appeal, bench further stated.

The blast was the first in the series of bomb explosions that rocked the city in 2002 and 2003. This was the first Pota case in which judgment has been delivered.

Eight persons, including forensic expert Dr Abdul Mateen and software engineer from Parbhani town in Marathwada, Khwaja Yunus, were accused of the crime. Yunus allegedly died in custody, while police claimed that he escaped from a police jeep while being taken to Ahmednagar for investigation.

The acquittal against the other three accused, which had allegedly planted the bomb in the bus, has not been challenged. According to prosecutor, the only witness against them was the bus conductor, who had turned hostile during the trial. However, these three accused are in custody for their alleged role in the twin blasts at Gateway of India and Zaveri Bazar on August 25, 2003.


Email Urvi Jappi: urvi.jappi@hindustantimes.com
No case made out for canceling bail of Ghatkopar blast accused: HC

 

Urvi Jappi
Mumbai, January 8

In a set back to the Maharashtra government the Bombay High Court on Monday refused to cancel bail of the three accused who were arrested for their alleged involvement in a bomb blast in a bus in December 2, 2002, which witnessed the disappearance of one of the accused Khwaja Yunus and subsequent arrest of police officers attached with the investigation.

A division bench of Justice JN Patel and Justice RS Mohite while rejecting the application by the government observed that the no case was made out for canceling bail and taking them in custody as the accused has not misused their bail conditions.

The government had approached the HC seeking cancellation of bail of three accused - Dr Abdul Mateen, Mohammed Altaf and Imran Rehman Khan - after the HC had admitted state's appeal against their acquittal last year.

On June 11, the special Prevention Of Terrorist Act (Pota) court had acquitted eight accused allegedly involved in the bomb blast in a BEST bus in suburban Ghatkopar on December 2, 2002. Two persons were killed and 49 injured in the blast. Designated judge AP Bhangale had acquitted all eight accused as the prosecution had failed to provide charges against them.

In July 2006 the government had challenged the acquittal of five of the eight accused - Dr Abdul Mateen, Mohammed Altaf, Imran Rehman Khan, Shaikh Mohammed Muzammil and Toufiq Hamid. The appeal states that the designated judge had "erred while appreciating the evidence the accused."

Public prosecutor sought that bail of three of the persons be cancelled as they were alleged of serious offence. Besides, the trial court had wrongly acquitted them without considering their confessional statements, the state contended.

However, the HC observed that the trial court had given reasonable grounds while releasing them on bail. Whether they were wrongly or rightly acquitted would be decided by the HC while hearing their appeal, bench further stated.

The blast was the first in the series of bomb explosions that rocked the city in 2002 and 2003. This was the first Pota case in which judgment has been delivered.

Eight persons, including forensic expert Dr Abdul Mateen and software engineer from Parbhani town in Marathwada, Khwaja Yunus, were accused of the crime. Yunus allegedly died in custody, while police claimed that he escaped from a police jeep while being taken to Ahmednagar for investigation.

The acquittal against the other three accused, which had allegedly planted the bomb in the bus, has not been challenged. According to prosecutor, the only witness against them was the bus conductor, who had turned hostile during the trial. However, these three accused are in custody for their alleged role in the twin blasts at Gateway of India and Zaveri Bazar on August 25, 2003.


Email Urvi Jappi: urvi.jappi@hindustantimes.com