Kozhikode blasts: Another accused sentenced to life

Last Updated: Friday, August 12, 2011 - 16:31

Kochi: In the first judicial verdict in an NIA investigated case, a court on Friday sentenced suspected LeT militant T Naseer and another accused to life imprisonment on charges including sedition in the 2006 Kozhikode blast case.

The quantum of punishment was pronounced by the National Investigating Agency court judge S Vijay Kumar, a day after Naseer and Shafas were found guilty.Two others were acquitted.

Naseer was handed down three life terms and Shafas two life sentences under Section 18 and Sect 16(1) of the Unlawful Activities (prevention act) and Sect 4(b) of the Explosives Substances Act.

The court also imposed a fine of Rs 1.60 lakh on Naseer and Rs 1.10 lakh on Shafas. Both were awarded two years imprisonment each under Sect 124(A) of IPC (sedition) and two years each under Sect 153 (wantonly giving provocation with
intent to cause riot).

The sentences would run concurrently, the court held.

Two policemen and a porter were injured in the Kozhikode
blasts.

The judge ordered the accused to do physical labour and
that they be given vocational training and permitted to have
reading material in vernacular language relating to patriotic
persons.

NIA counsel said this was a grave crime and no leniency
should be shown to the accused. As far as India was concerned,
the twin blasts in a city was a very serious crime.

Citing Supreme Court rulings, he said the impact of offence
was on the whole society. Peace of the society had been
disturbed by exploding bombs. It creates fear in society and
so no leniency should be shown.

NIA Chief Investigating officer of the case and NIA SP, T
K Rajmohan, told a news agency that after formation of NIA in 2009,
this was its first case in the country in which a judgement
was delivered.

NIA is probing 22 cases across the country, of which seven
related to Kerala, the official in charge of NIA cases in
Kerala, Karnataka and Lakshadweep said.

About 58 prosecution witnesses were examined by the NIA.

Naseer and Shafas were arrested by Meghalaya police at the
state border while trying to cross over to Bangladesh in
February 2010 and later handed over to NIA.

The two were found guilty of criminal conspiracy, creating
disaffection toward government and religious enmity and
charges under Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.

`Planting of bombs and explosion constitute terrorist act.
After the blast, people were evacuated and buses were
removed`. The accused also wanted to promote enmity between
different groups on grounds of caste or community, disharmony
or feeling of enmity, the court held.

The bomb first exploded in a garbage dump at the Kerala
State Road Transport Corporation bus station and soon after at
a nearby drain.

After the judgement was delivered amid tight security,
Naseer walked upto the NIA counsel and handed him a copy of
the Quran, saying `thanks for handing me the sentence`.

Naseer is also an accused in the 2008 Bangalore serial
blasts case, in which two persons were killed and 20 others
injured.

PTI



First Published: Friday, August 12, 2011 - 14:51

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