Samjhauta blasts: Which confession do we believe?

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October 2008- We carried out the Samjhauta blasts with the help of Pakistani nationals says Safdar Nagori, the head of the radical faction of the Students Islamic Movement of India.

January 2011- I read about the in the newspaper. I asked Sunil Joshi and he told me his men carried out the blasts- Swami Aseemanand an accused in the case.

Ironically both have denied making such statements. They state that they made these confessions to the police under duress. The point however is that how does one case have two set of accused?

Samjautha Express

Both the accused are ideologically poles apart and even in one's wildest of imaginations the chance of the two coming together is impossible.

The Nagori confession:

When the NIA took over the case it had already witnessed two sets of accused. While the first half of the probe pointed to the SIMI and the Lashkar-e-Tayiba the second half focused entirely on Hindu elements. The chargesheet has the names of 9 persons all Hindus and the case is at the trial stage.

While there were statements in the media two days back stating that Lt Colonel Purohit has been given a clean chit in this case, the fact of the matter is that he was never an accused in the case. Hence the question of giving him a clean chit does not arise in the first place.

After the attack on the Samjhauta express, there was a report from the United States of America which stated a Lashkar-e-Tayiba financier Asif Kasmani had carried out the attack.

The police then subject Nagori to a narco analysis test. During this test which is the most unreliable, he is said to have confessed to his role in the blasts. He also is claimed to have said that the attack was carried out to derail the Indo-Pak peace process.

The other confession:

However, the track of the investigation changed completely. Swami Aseemanand was picked up and subject to interrogation. He issued a confessional statement in Delhi. He said before the Metropolitan Magistrate of the Tis Hazari court that he was aware of the blast but had no role to play.

The blast was planned by Sunil Joshi. He also said that he read about the attacks in the newspaper. When he called Joshi he is alleged to have confessed to being part of the attacks. Joshi was however murdered and the NIA took up the probe into this case.

The mess that the NIA finds itself in:

At first the NIA was confused as to which report to rely upon. However for nearly three years the NIA probed the Aseemanand angle to the case. There are three chargesheets in the case which speak about the role of Hindus in this incident. Moreover the trial too has commenced in this case.

Although the trial is being conducted on the basis of the NIA chargesheet, the agency could report fresh facts if it has any before the court. It would be extremely difficult to do so, but it is still an option open. What set off the entire debate regarding this case was when a team of the NIA visited the US.

It was said that they were visiting the US to get more details on role of the Lashkar -e-Tayiba. However, it does not appear that much has come out in this regard. NIA officials say that they were just double checking and want to be entirely sure. The NIA has done its job, the media has spoken enough about it.

The fate of this case is not in the hands of the media, government or the NIA. It is for the court to decide and it should remain at just that.

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