Maudhani opposes third party appeal against his acquittal

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Chennai, Jul 16 (UNI) About 90 days after the lapse of the permissible appeal period, K Vellingiri of Mettupalayam today filed a revision plea in the Madras High Court against the release of PDP Chairman in Kerala, Abdul Nazar Maudhany, acquitted in the 1998 Coimbatore serial bomb blasts case.

The petitioner, who is the father of one of the deceased in the serial blasts, sought to implead himself as a party to appeal against the trial court judgement and filed a condone delay petition.

Mr Justice K Mohan Ram, before whom the petition came up for hearing, said he would pass an order on the condon-delay petition tomorrow.

However, opposing the waiver of ''inordinate delay'', Maudhany filed a counter-affidavit, alleging that the ''private interest litigation had been filed with an intention to foster political disputes.'' Noting that averments in the affidavit filed by Vellingiri were scandalous and defamatory, Maudhany also submitted that ''vested interests with improper motive'' were behind the petition.

Maudhany also contended that Vellingiri was examined as a prosecution witness in the serial blasts case along with four others.

Questioning their locus standi, the PDP leader contended that they were neither aggrieved nor interested in the prosecution case.

Merely because they were examined as witnesses in the case, they cannot be permitted to file the revision petition after an inordinate delay of 88 days, he submitted.

He further contended that the petition was filed without any genuine public interest and they had not approached the court with clean hands.

Taking exception to certain ''sweeping allegations'' levelled against him, Maudhany submitted that he had undergone mental and physical agony for the past one decade and the criminal prosecution against him was initiated not on a private complaint, but by the police and the state.

Maudhany contended that thus the present revision petitions were not maintainable in law.

The February 14, 1998 serial blasts in Coimbatore claimed 47 lives and left 218 others injured. A total of 166 persons, including Maudhany and S A Basha, were tried for various offences.

On August 1, 2007, the special court found 158 persons guilty. Of them, 88 were sentenced to imprisonment ranging from three to nine years, 43 persons, including Basha, were slapped with life imprisonment.

While 15 persons were sentenced to 13-year RI, 10 others were awarded 10-year jail term. Two others got seven years sentence, whereas one person -- Ruaz ur Rahman -- was released as he had turned approver.

The Tamil Nadu Government is yet to appeal against the special court judgement.

UNI XR VV ATI RAI2131

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