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1993 Mumbai blasts trial longest in India's history

Source: PTI
March 21, 2013 20:06 IST
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The 1993 serial bomb blast case, in which final verdict was delivered by the Supreme Court on Thursday, was historic in many ways.

The longest trial in the country's history spanned over 12 years, commencing on June 30, 1995, when the first witness stepped into the box, and concluding on July 31, 2007, when the judgment was delivered by the designated TADA (Terrorist and Disruptive Activities (Prevention) Act) court.

A large number of 189 accused were arrested in the case but some of them were discharged and few others died, leaving 123 to face the trial. Such a number is a record in the country's judicial history, according to lawyer Subhash Kanse, who defended some of the accused in this case.

The chargesheet, along with statements of the accused, ran into more than 10,000 pages. As each of the 123 accused was to be supplied copies of the chargesheet, police had to use trucks to bring huge piles of papers to the court.

A record number of 686 witnesses were examined in the case, also a record, Kanse told PTI.

As case papers along with appeals totaling a whopping 1,20,000 pages had to be sent to the Supreme Court for the final verdict, it asked the authorities to supply the documents in CDs, Kanse said.

Designated Judge P D Kode also posted a record, as he did not take a single day leave during the 12-year trial.

On some occasions, the judge came to the court on Sundays and holidays in cases of emergency when an accused had to be released temporarily due to sickness or to attend funeral of relatives.

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