Witness confirms going with Salem to Gujarat to bring arms

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Mumbai, Jun 10 (UNI) The separate trial against extradited gangster Abu Salem for his involvement in the 1993 serial bomb blasts began today before the recently designated TADA judge D U Mulla.

Deposing before TADA judge, prosecution witness no 6, a civilian whose identity is kept secret, during his examination-in-chief by Chief Public Prosecutor Ujwal Nikam, confirmed that he, along with Salem, went to Bharuch in Gujarat prior to the 1993 blasts, where another accused Riyaz Siddiqui met them and handed over the keys of a car to Salem that had a secret cabin.

According to the prosecution, Salem had brought deadly weapons and arms from Gujarat by road, which he later distributed to other accused, including Bollywood actor Sanjay Dutt, before the blasts.

It may be recalled that the trial against Salem was stayed temporarily last month after the then TADA judge P D Kode, who had convicted 100 accused including members of Memon family (the prime accused in the case), actor Sanjay Dutt and others, was transferred to Nashik as Pricipal Sessions Judge.

Earlier, Salem's lawyer had filed an application before the court, praying that the trial should be heard by a new judge.

The prosecution on June 5 sought the court's permission to serve summons to the prosecution witness. In response to that witness no 6 was deposed before the court.

Till date, six witnesses had been deposed before the court against Salem, including a passport officer from Lucknow and an immigration officer. The latter was the first person to see Salem at the Mumbai airport after he was extradited from Portugal in 2005.

Salem has been charged for supplying arms and ammunition to the other accused in the 1993 serial bomb blasts case.


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