A Barabanki District Court has acquitted the two accused in the Sabarmati Express Blast Case of 2000. One of the accused is 44-year-old Ex- AMU Scholar Gulzar Wani who was arrested in the case in 2001 by Delhi Police when he was only 28.
Additional Sessions Judge MA Khan acquitted Gulzar Ahmad Wani and Abdul Mubeen of all charges due to lack of evidence against them.
Nine died and over a dozen people were injured in the blast that occurred on August 14, 2000 in a bogie of the Sabarmati Express Train at Barabanki district.
While Abdul Mubeen stated that he was an intern after finishing graduation in Unani Medicine and Surgery at Aligarh Muslim University (AMU), Abdul Wani was pursuing his Phd in Arabic at AMU.
Abdul Mubeen had been out on bail, but Wani who is originally from Baramulla, Kashmir was arrested by Delhi police in July 2001 and has been in custody since then.
On April 25, 2017 the bench of CJI JS Khehar and DY Chandrachud had termed Wani’s custody for 16 years without bail “a shame” and ordered Wani to be released on bail in November if the trial court failed to examine all the witnesses by then.
In the 27-page judgement that is in Hindi, Court observed -
“After examining all the facts presented by the prosecution, and deliberating upon judgements of the Supreme Court, I have reached the conclusion that the prosecution was unable to prove that the accused Abdul Mubin and Gulzar Ahmad Wani have been a part of a criminal conspiracy as defined under Section 120A of the IPC.
The prosecution was unable to place any facts before us that prove the guilt of Guzar Wani and Abdul Mubin along with other accused in planting a bomb in the SLR bogie of Sabarmati Express under a criminal conspiracy with the intent of murder. Prosecution was also unable to prove the accused collected explosive substance to wage war against the Union of India.
Thus, the prosecution has failed to prove the accused’s guilt under Sections 120B, 120A, 122, 123, 124A, 302, 307, 338 of the Indian Penal Code and Sections 150(2) and 151 of the Indian Railways Act. Therefore, the accused deserve to be acquitted.” [Translated]
In further relief to Wani, Court also observed that the Investigating Officer Ravindra Nath Singh failed to discharge his duty effectively and filed a charge sheet without basis, and because Gulzar Wani has been in jail for the last 16 years he is eligible for compensation
Read the Judgment here.