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How March 12, 1993 became Mumbai’s Black Friday: 5 things to know about serial blasts

Mumbai city news: The ‘Black Friday’ attack was one of the most well-planned terror attacks on Indian soil till the 26/11 Mumbai attacks happened

mumbai Updated: Jun 17, 2017 00:28 IST
HT Correspondent
A victim being rescued from Air India building
A victim being rescued from Air India building(HT FILE)

On March 12, 1993, a series of 12 blasts in quick succession rocked Mumbai, killing 257 people and injuring 713 others. Property worth about Rs27 crore was destroyed The blasts were master-minded by gangster Dawood Ibrahim Kaskar and carried out by his henchmen, absconder Tiger Memon and others. The ‘Black Friday’ attack was one of the most well-planned terror attacks on Indian soil till the 26/11 Mumbai attacks happened. It was also the first terror attack on Indian soil in which RDX was used as the explosive material

THE TRIGGER

Babri Masjid at Ayodhya was demolished on December 6, 1992. After its demolition, violence broke out throughout the country. In order to take revenge, Tiger Memon and Dawood Ibrahim hatched a conspiracy to commit a terrorist act in Mumbai

Take a look at the 12 spots, here

ABSCONDING ACCUSED: THE BRAINS BEHIND THE BLASTS
  • Thirty-five people, including prime accused Dawood Ibrahim, associates Tiger Memon, Mohammed Ahmed Umar Dosa and Javed Chikna, are still wanted in the case
  • DAWOOD IBRAHIM KASKAR: A constable’s son who rose from Mumbai’s underbelly, he fought a pitched battle against rival mafia dons, and gave a corporate culture to Mumbai’s underworld. He left the country in 1984, and emerged after nine years, as the man who sponsored the 1993 Mumbai serial blast. Dawood is believed to be in Karachi, Pakistan
  • IBRAHIM ABDUL RAZAK MEMON ALIAS TIGER MEMON: A convent-educated student, the lure of money got Memon to Mumbai’s underworld. However, the riots in 1992, where his family allegedly suffered, changed his views. He then went on to plan, coordinate and execute 1993 Mumbai serial blasts. Memon, through his contacts in Mumbai’s underworld, travelled to Pakistan via Dubai, and chalked out the extensive plan to get RDX on the Maharashtra coast to carry out the blasts. Little has been heard about Tiger Memon since he fled the country. Police sources claim Memon shuttles between Pakistan and Dubai
  • MOHAMMED UMAR AHMED DOSSA: Brother of Mustafa Dossa, an accused in the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts, Mohammed is believed to have facilitated meetings of those involved in the blasts in Dubai. It was because of the wide network of landing agents from the Dossa company that Tiger could get explosives to the city. While Mustafa Dossa was deported to Mumbai and faces trial in the1993 Mumbai serial blast, Mohammed has become one of the top three hawala operators in the world, said sources. Mohammed, police sources said, has a chain of jewellery stores in Dubai operated under various aliases.
  • JAVED DAWOOD TAILOR ALIAS JAVED PATEL ALIAS JAVED CHIKNA: He suffered a bullet injury in the 1992 Mumbai riots. Javed, who got the alias Chikna for his good looks, ensured the vehicles were loaded with explosives, and monitored the planting of bombs. He was in Mumbai till the blasts, after which he escaped to Dubai. Javed, too, is believed to be in Pakistan
  • DAWOOD PHANSE: Tiger’s landing agent. Agreed to help after meeting Dawood in Dubai. His men unloaded RDX from boats and transported it to Mumbai
  • SHARIF ABDUL GAFOOR PARKAR: Convicted for aiding the landing of arms and ammunition. The Raigad resident was part of Tiger’s smuggling operation. The 70-year-old’s son Mujib has also has been convicted of the same charges.

THE INVESTIGATION

Investigation was led by then joint commissioner of police MN Singh, who later became police commissioner, and then DCP Rakesh Maria, who recently retired

A special court was set up under the draconian TADA Act (later repealed), inside the Arthur Road jail. Fifteen years later, the jail was the scene of another sensational trial, the November 26, 2008, Mumbai terror attacks

For nearly 15 years in the 1993 blasts case, four judges conducted the trial -- special judge JN Patel, special judge PD Kode, special judge UD Mulla and currently it is special Judge GA Sanap

ACCUSED FACING TRIALS AND THEIR ROLES

Mustafa Dossa

ARRESTED: March 20, 2003

CHARGES: He has been charged with arranging landing of arms, ammunition and explosives at Dighi in Raigad district and participating in the blast conspiracy

Abu Salem Ansari

ARRESTED: August 2, 2005

CHARGES: Charged with supplying arms, ammunition and hand grenades

Riyaz Ahmed Siddique

ARRESTED: August 2, 2005

CHARGES: Siddique is charged with transporting explosives in a van, which were later used in the blasts

Abdul Qayyum Shaikh

ARRESTED: February 13, 2007

CHARGES: He has been charged with accompanying Abu Salem to Sanjay Dutt’s house to deliver arms and ammunition

Firoz Khan

ARRESTED: February 5, 2010

CHARGES: Charged with arranging transportation and distribution of arms, ammunition and explosive

A bomb being defused at Naigaum. (HT FILE PHOTO)

Mohammad Tahir Merchant Alias Tahir Taklya

ARRESTED: June 8, 2010

CHARGES: Charged with making arrangements to send other convicts to Pakistan for training

Karimullah Shaikh

ARRESTED: August 21, 2008

CHARGES: He has been charged with smuggling arms into the country through the Shekhadi coast of Raigad district

KEY DATES IN THE CASE

MARCH 12, 1993: At least 12 blasts rock Mumbai. 257 people killed, 713 injured.

JUNE, 1995: Trial begins in TADA court in Mumbai, which is housed in high-security Arthur Road jail

SEPTEMBER 2006: 100 accused, including Yakub Memon (brother of prime accused Tiger Memon), are convicted.

JULY 13, 2006: Gangster Abu Salem’s trial is separated from the other accused.

JULY 27, 2007: Judge PD Kode of the TADA courts awards death sentence to Yakub.

JULY 30, 2015: Yakub is hanged to death.

Mangled remains of a car at BSE. (HT FILE)

HOW IT WAS PLANNED

Mohammad Dossa held the first meeting on January 1, 1993, in Hotel Persian Darbar, Panvel

On January 19, 1993, Dawood Ibrahim and Tiger Memon held another meeting in Dubai. At the meeting, they made a blueprint of the plan. Tiger agreed to arrange for landing of arms, ammunition and explosives

The arms and ammunition were delivered from Dubai and Pakistan through the sea route

Between February 2 and February 8, 1993, two more consignments of arms, ammunition, detonators, hand grenades and explosives like RDX were delivered at Shekhadi Coast in Raigad district

On March 4, 1993, Tiger Memon called for a preparatory meeting at Taj Mahal Hotel.

On March 7, 1993, another meeting was held at the house of Shafi, where Tiger Memon formed separate groups for reconnaissance of targets.

On March 8, 1993, another meeting was held at the residence of Babloo, where Tiger Memon finalized the targets

On March 10, 1993, a meeting was held at the house of Mobina alias Bayamoosa Bhiwandiwala In the second meeting, Tiger Memon distributed Rs5,000 to each one of them and again formed groups.

On the intervening night of March 11 and March 12, 1993, another meeting was held at Al-Hussaini Building, Dargah Street, Mahim, where details of the plan were finalised. Co- conspirators stored explosives such as RDX and firearms in garages owned by Memons’ and their relatives at Al-Hussaini building

On March 12, 1993, bombs and other explosives were planted at various places.

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