A special Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) court has convicted twelve out of the thirteen accused in the deadly 2006 Mumbai suburban train bombing claimed over 200 lives and injured more than 800. One accused has been a acquitted in the case.
The quantum of sentence is yet to be announced. The arguments on the punishment are likely to take place on Monday and the decision will be made thereafter.
The 12 have been convicted under MOCOCA, UAPA, Indian Explosive Act, Damage to pubic property, Railway Act. The detailed judgement has not yet been handed over.
The verdict comes nine years after the blasts targeted the crowded suburban train services in 2006 during the evening peak hours. The bombs that went off in a span of just 11 minutes, were kept in pressure cookers and went off in north-bound locals on Western Railway. Bhayander, Borivali, Jogeshwari, Khar Road, Bandra, Mahim and Matunga Road were targeted.
After the arrest of 22 Indian Mujahideen operatives by the Mumbai crime branch in September 2008, soon there were claims that the ATS had falsely implicated some people. Mohammed Sadiq Israr Sheikh, the co-founder of Indian Mujahideen claimed it was he who carried out the train bombings and not the men being tried in the Mumbai court. Sadiq later retracted his statement saying it was made under duress.
In the course of the trial, call data records (CDRs) produced before the special MCOCA court indicated that phones belonging to three men accused of planting bombs on Virar-bound trains at Churchgate were in fact, nowhere near the station on that day.
The investigating agency, Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) had questioned as many as 200 witnesses against 13 accused.