The Bombay High Court on Friday admitted an appeal filed by suspected Laskhar-e-Toiba member Ashrat Ansari challenging capital punishment awarded to him by a POTA court for his role in the 2003 bomb blasts that left 54 people dead.
The appeal was admitted by Justice Bilal Nazki and Justice A R Joshi who asked the Maharashtra government to produce Ansari and two other convicts Hanif Sayed and his wife Fahmida on the next hearing after eight weeks.
While Ashrat has filed an appeal against the POTA court order, the other two convicts are yet to move the High Court challenging capital punishment awarded to them. However, POTA court has made a reference to the High Court to confirm the death penalty awarded to the three convicts.
The Court has directed the government to produce the case papers and the verdict of the POTA court before it after eight weeks when the reference and Ansari's appeal would be finally heard.
The POTA court had convicted Hanif Sayed Anees (46), his wife Fahmida (43) and Ashrat Ansari (32), saying the three had carried out designs of the Pakistani terror outfit LeT to create terror in India through bomb attacks at Gateway of India and Zaveri Bazar and planting a bomb in a bus.
Hanif, Ansari and the blast mastermind Nasir made bombs at Hanif's Andheri house.