Godhra train burning case convicts file appeals in Guj HC
The 31 accused, convicted by the trial court in the 2002 Godhra train burning case, have filed appeals before the Gujarat High Court.
Ahmedabad: The 31 accused, convicted by
the trial court in the 2002 Godhra train burning case, have
filed appeals before the Gujarat High Court.
On March 1 this year, a special trial court here
convicted 31 persons and acquitted 63 others in connection
with the burning of S-6 coach of the Sabarmati Express near
Godhra railway station in 2002, wherein 59 people, mostly
karsevaks, died. The incident had triggered widespread
communal riots in the state.
The appeals were filed last week by the accused,
including Haji Bilal, Mohammad Kurkur, Binyamin Behra, Hasan
Charkha, Yusuf Zarda, Mehbub Ahmed alias Latiko and five
others who were awarded death sentence, and others who
were awarded life sentences.
Hearing on these appeals is likely to be taken up
after the summer vacation of the High Court, said special
public prosecutor J M Panchal.
Meanwhile, the Supreme Court-appointed Special
Investigation Team (SIT), which is the probe agency for Godhra
case, has yet to challenge the acquittal of 63 persons by the
SIT has already filed applications for confirmation of
the death sentence for the 11 accused before the High court,
which is mandatory as per the law.
Trial Judge P R Patel, while delivering the verdict, had
termed the incident as the "rarest of the rare" and said that
any liberal attitude or sympathetic view would be
counter-productive in the long run and would be against
the societal interest.