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Haren Pandya murder: SC affirms conviction of ten persons

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New Delhi, Nov 21: The Supreme Court has confirmed the conviction of ten persons in connection with the March 2003 murder of former Gujarat Home Minister, Haren Pandya.

The review petitions filed by 10 of the 12 convicts in the case were rejected by a Bench comprising, Justices Arun Mishra and Vineet Saran.

The Bench said that it had perused the pleas and the record of appeals and is convinced that the order, of which review has been brought does not suffer from any error. The Supreme Court also rejected a PIL filed by an NGO, Centre for Public Interest Litigation that sought a court-monitored probe into the murder. A cost of Rs 50,000 was also slapped on the NGO stating that the petition brought forward was not bonafide.

File photo of Haren Pandya

The Supreme Court had in July sentenced 9 of the 12 convicts to life imprisonment while setting aside their acquittal by the Gujarat High Court. The rest were given varying jail terms as was awarded by the POTA Court in 2007.

Haren Pandya murder: SC convicts all 12 accused, reverses order of High Court

Pandya was shot dead on March 26, 2003, at Ahmedabad, when he was out on his morning walk. The CBI maintained that he was murdered to avenge the communal riots that broke out in the state in 2002.

The Gujarat High Court had acquitted the accused in 2011, but the Supreme Court set aside this verdict stating that it suffered from infirmities. Further, the SC also noted that the evidence brought forward by the CBI had not been appreciated.

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