After 11 years the special NIA court on Monday delivered its verdict in the high-profile Mecca Masjid case in which all the accused were acquitted due to lack of evidence.
The National Investigation Agency says that they would first examine the judgment and then decide on filing an appeal. An NIA officer informed that they were yet to go through the entire judgment copy. The court had said that it was acquitting all five persons as there was not sufficient evidence against them.
The case has seen several twists and turns. The police had probed the case at first following which it handed over to the CBI. A total of 226 witnesses were examined during the trial and as many as 411 documents were exhibited.
The NIA had framed charges against Nabakumar Sarkar alias Swamy Aseemanand of Gujarat, private employee Bharat Mohanlal Rateshwar of Gujarat, farmer Rajender Chowdary of Madhya Pradesh (MP), Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) pracharak Devendra Gupta of Rajasthan, and property dealer-cum-RSS activist Lokesh Sharma of MP.
Two other accused, former RSS pracharak Sandeep V. Dange and electrician-cum-RSS activist Ramchandra Kalsangra from MP are absconding.
The pipe bomb explosion at the historic Mecca Masjid in Hyderabad had killed eight and left 58 others injured. Five others were also killed after police opened fire to control a rioting mob during the Friday prayers in Mecca Masjid on May 18, 2007.