7 accused in Jalna mosque blast case acquitted



Jalna: The district and sessions court on Wednesday acquitted all the seven accused in the Qadria Masjid bomb blast case due to lack of evidence.

The seven accused in the case, Maroti Keshwarao Wagh, Yogesh Ravindra Deshpande, Gururaj Jayram Tuptewar, Rahul Manohar Pande, Sanjay alias Bharauo Vittal Chowdhari, Himanshu Panse (all residents of Nanded) and Rakesh Dhawade (Pune) were acquitted in the case due to lack of evidence.

On August 27, 2004, a crude bomb was hurled in the mosque during the prayer.

Seven persons had received injuries in the blast. The imam of of the mosque Sayyed Kausar had lodged a complaint with Sadar Bazar police station in this connection.

Meanwhile, one of the accused Himanshu Panse had died in a blast in Nanded while he was preparing a bomb.

The local crime branch arrested six accused and filed charge sheets against them.

When the case came up for hearing, the judge PH Gajbhiye recorded statements of 28 witnesses in the case. Statements of the then tehsildar and ATS and local crime branch officers were also recorded.

After hearing both the sides, the judge acquitted all the seven accused due to lack of evidence.

Advocate Sanjive Deshpande, Vipul Deshpande, Nitin Runwal and Babasaheb Tengle pleaded the case, while Pradeep Jadhav worked as government pleader.

After the judgment, jubilant RSS workers distributed sweets on the court premises.

Dhawade and others are also accused in the Nanded, Parbhani and Malegaon blast cases.

PTI