The NIA special court in Kochi on Friday sentenced the self-styled south Indian commander of Lakshar-e-Taiba, Thadiynatavide Nazeer, and his accomplice M Shafaz to life imprisonment for twin blasts in Kozhikode in 2006.
This is the first verdict in a case investigated by the National Investigation Agency (NIA).
NIA special judge S Vijayakumar handed Nazeer triple life terms, an additional five-year rigorous imprisonment and imposed a fine of R1.60 lakh. M Shafaz was sentenced to double life terms and slapped with a fine of R1.10 lakh.
The sentences would run concurrently, the court held. Nazeer and Shafaz were found guilty of waging war against the nation and taking part in anti-national activities. According to the NIA, the twin blasts — in which two policemen were injured — were in retaliation for accused in the 2003 communal riot in Marad in Kozhikode not being granted bail. The court said such punishment should act as a deterrent to those who indulged in anti-national activities.
Of the eight accused in the twin blasts case, two were acquitted for want of evidence. One turned approver and another was killed in an encounter with security forces in Jammu and Kashmir. The remaining two accused are absconding.
Nazeer was arrested from Bangladesh two years ago and handed over to India. He was allegedly involved in many terror plots including the 2005 attack on the Indian Institute of Science in Bangalore.
A police source said Nazeer was an associate of jailed cleric Abdul Nasser Madani, but later fell out with him. According to Karnataka Police, Nazeer had informed Madani about the Bangalore attack.