1993 Blasts Death Row Convict Tahir Merchant Dead
On September 7, 2017, he was awarded death penalty for conspiring, facilitating and knowingly commissioning acts of terror leading to the March 1993 serial bomb explosions which rocked Mumbai.
File photo of the Gateway of India after the 1993 Mumbai Blasts.
Mumbai: M Tahir Merchant, alias Tahir Takla, one of the convicts in the March 1993 Mumbai serial blasts who was sentenced to death, died of a heart attack in Pune on Wednesday.
Merchant, who was lodged in the Yerawada Central Jail here, suffered a heart attack in the prison around 3 am and was rushed to the Sassoon Hospital.
However, he failed to respond to the treatment and breathed his last around 3.45 a.m., said Additional DGP (Prisons) BK Upadhyay.
Merchant was convicted in September 2017 along with Abu Salem and others in the 1993 blasts case. He was charged under TADA act along with Arms and Explosives Act and for murder and conspiracy under IPC. He was awarded death penalty for conspiring and commissioning acts of terror. However, the Supreme Court had stayed his execution in December.
Tahir was charged with helping the accused travel to Pakistan via Dubai for training in handling arms and ammunition. He grew up with Dawood Ibrahim and his brothers and had a played a significant role in the blasts. He allegedly motivated associates to arrange men from Mumbai for training in handling of arms and ammunition in Pakistan.
He had allegedly arranged transport and fake passports for many to attend arms training in Pakistan and was also instrumental in setting up illegal arms factory in India.
The series of explosions in Mumbai in 1993 killed 257 people and injured more than 700 and destroyed property worth over 100 crore. Over 100 accused have been convincted in the case over the last several years and more than 20 are absconding which include most wanted gangster Dawood Ibrahim and Tiger Memon who are said to be the masterminds of the blast.
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