9 convicted for role in 2013 Patna blasts at Modi rally venue

Additional district and sessions judge Gurwinder Singh Malhotra will pronounce the quantum of the sentence on November 1 after hearing the arguments of the prosecution and the defence lawyers
At least six crude bombs left six people dead and around 90 wounded before Modi addressed the rally at Patna’s Gandhi Maidan in 2013 (AFP Photo/File)
At least six crude bombs left six people dead and around 90 wounded before Modi addressed the rally at Patna’s Gandhi Maidan in 2013 (AFP Photo/File)
Updated on Oct 27, 2021 03:05 PM IST
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A special National Investigation Agency (NIA) court on Wednesday convicted nine people of their role in serial blasts at the venue of Narendra Modi’s election rally at Patna’s Gandhi Maidan in 2013.

At least six crude bombs left six people dead and around 90 wounded before Modi, who was then the Bharatiya Janata Party’s prime ministerial candidate, addressed the rally. The explosive devices went off after a blast at a nearby railway station. Four unexploded devices were also found. Modi addressed the rally for around an hour after the blasts and called for unity between poor Hindus and Muslims.

Additional district and sessions judge Gurwinder Singh Malhotra held Imtiyaz Ansari, Haider Ali alias “Black Beauty”, Mohammed Mujibullah Ansari, Umar Siddiqui, Azharuddin Qureshi, Ahmed Hussain, Nawaz Ansari, Mohammed Iftekhar Alam, and Feroz Aslam guilty of planting and detonating the explosions. A 10th accused, Fakruddin, was acquitted due to want of evidence.

Malhotra will pronounce the quantum of the sentence on November 1 after hearing the arguments of the prosecution and the defence lawyers.

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Lawyer Lalan Singh, who represented the NIA, told reporters the nine were convicted under the Indian Penal Code, the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act and the Explosives Act. The Patna Police first probed the case before it was handed over to the NIA. Most of the accused belong to Jharkhand.

Singh said they have demanded death sentences for the accused. He added the convicts were former Students’ Islamic Movement of India activists.

The court pronounced the judgment in the presence of the convicts amid tight security at the Patna civil court complex. A heavy police force was deployed in and around the court building.

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Thursday, December 02, 2021