The National Investigation Agency (NIA) Special Court will on Wednesday announce the quantum of sentence for the two convicts in the 2007 Ajmer dargah blast case. The special NIA court earlier on March 8 convicted three people in the Ajmer blast case, while acquitting seven others, including RSS worker Swami Aseemanand, giving them the benefit of the doubt. Those convicted were Sunil Joshi, who has figured in other cases, Devendra Gupta and Bhavesh Patel. Of these, Joshi died in June 2014.
Gupta and Patel were convicted under various Sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) for criminal conspiracy and under Sections of the Explosive Substances Act and Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.
On October 11, 2007, a powerful bomb had gone off on the premises of the Ajmer Sharif Dargah in Rajasthan during iftar at around 6.12 p.m., killing three people and injuring 17 others.
Earlier, a special NIA court acquitted key accused Swami Asseemanand in the 2007 Ajmer blast case. It also gave a clean chit to two others. The court, however, found three guilty in the blast case. On October 11, 2007, during the month of Ramzan, a blast rocked the dargah of Sufi saint Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti, killing three and injuring 17 people.
Swami Aseemanand, alongwith several others were accused as per the NIA’s chargesheet filed in the 2007 Ajmer blast case. They were accused of various charges, including hatching a blast conspiracy, planting bombs, murdering and spreading communal hatred.
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The accused in the case, apart from Aseemanand, included Chandrashekhar Leve, Mukesh Vasani, Bharat Mohan Rateshwar, Lokesh Sharma, Bhavesh Patel, Mehul Kumar, Harshad Solanki and Devendra. The 8 accused are in judicial custody while one, Chandrashekhar Leve is out on bail. Three other accused are currently absconding. They include Suresh Nair, Sandeep Dange and Ramchandra. One accused, Sunil Joshi, was murdered in 2007.
Two FIRs were registered in 2007 in Ajmer in this matter. However, investigations in this case were transferred to the NIA only in 2011. The NIA filed the chargesheet in the case in the same year. Subsequently, supplement chargesheets were filed in the case.
The agency accused Aseemanand of masterminding the blast that rocked the Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti shrine in the month of Ramzan on October 11, 2007, which left 3 people dead and 17 injured.