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Five more convicted in Coimbatore serial blasts case
August 06, 2007 16:05 IST
A special court hearing the 1998 Coimbatore serial bomb blasts case, convicted five accused on Monday.
Judge K Uthirapathy held the accused -- Sarbudeen, Sikander, Mir Shabir Ahmed, Ayyappan and Ubaidur Rehman -- guilty of minor charges. Since major charges like criminal conspiracy could not be proved against them, Judge Uthirapathy asked the convicted accused to file bail applications.
Earlier, the judge had convicted 153 of the total 167 accused, including Al-Umma leader S A Basha, on August 1. Eight others were acquitted by the court, including Kerala-based People's Democratic Party chairman Abdul Nasser Maudhany.
Meanwhile, the court has started hearing the bail petitions of the 84 accused convicted of minor charges. Judge Uthirapathy asked the public prosecutor to file a list of those accused, who did not have any pending cases against them, so that their petitions could be disposed of first.
The serial blasts on February 14, 1998, had killed 58 people and injured over 250 in the textile city, minutes before Bharatiya Janata Party leader Lal Kishenchand Advani was to address an election meeting for the impending Lok Sabha polls. The explosions at 19 locations, between February 14 and 17, aimed to avenge the communal riots of December 1997, which rocked Coimbatore after traffic constable Selvaraj was allegedly killed by Al Umma cadre on November 29.