5-year prison term for 13 in Kandhamal case | india | Hindustan Times
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5-year prison term for 13 in Kandhamal case

india Updated: May 19, 2011 00:19 IST
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A fast track court in Orissa convicted 13 persons on Wednesday for their involvement in anti-Christian violence in Kandhamal district in 2008, while another court acquitted 12 others.

“All the cases were related to arson,” public prosecutor PK Patra said.

Kandhamal’s district headquarter Phulbani is 250 km south-east of Bhubaneswar.

First Track Court I judge Shobhan Das handed the each of the 13 persons over a punishment of five years’ rigorous jail term and fine of Rs 2000.

Fast Track Court II judge BN Mishra, on the other hand, acquitted 12 others for lack of evidence.

The riots, which took place in August 2008, were the worst in the history of Orissa.

They were triggered by the murder of Swami Lakshmanananda by suspected Maoists.

The Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP), however, blamed the Christian community for his murder.

At least 38 persons were killed in the riots. Thousands of houses were raged to the ground. Thousands of people left their villages to take shelter in refugee camps.

The Orissa government had set up two fast track courts to try the cases
related to the violence. The courts have convicted more than 150 persons for their role in the riots.