A special National Investigation Agency (NIA) court in Jaipur on Wednesday acquitted Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh pracharak Swami Aseemanand and convicted three persons in the 2007 Ajmer Dargah blast case.
Six others were also given clean chit in the case. The three found guilty by the NIA court are Bhavesh, Devendra Gupta and Sunil Joshi. Of them, Joshi was murdered in December 2007. The court imposed a fine of Rs. 1 lakh each on Bhavesh and Devendra.
Patel and Gupta have been found guilty under section 120 (B) and 295 of IPC and section 34 of the explosive act. The quantum of punishment will be pronounced by the court on March 16.
The blast on October 11, 2007 in the Dargah of Khawaja Moinuddin Chisti at the time of roza iftaar had left three pilgrims dead and 15 injured. The dargah was packed to capacity with about 5,000 devotees when the blast occurred. The blast was caused allegedly to stir communal disharmony, insult the religious feelings and incite riots during the month of Ramzan.
Investigation revealed the alleged involvement of saffron groups in the explosion, with several names also cropping up as accused in the Mecca Masjid blast in Hyderabad and the Samjhauta Express blast.
Swami Aseemanand’s confession in the case before a Metropolitan Magistrate at the Tis Hazari courts in Delhi made headlines in December 2010. He stated that he and other activists were involved in bombing various places of worship across the country for taking revenge against the ”terror acts of Muslims”.
The judge had twice deferred judgment in the case, saying it was a voluminous matter and he required more time for studying the documents submitted by the prosecution and the defence.
Six other accused, Swami Aseemanand, Harshad Solanki, Lokesh Sharma, Mehul Kumar, Mukesh Vasani and Bharat Bhai were acquitted of all charges.
The Rajasthan Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS) filed a chargesheet against three accused persons on October 20, 2010 before the chief judicial magistrate court in Ajmer. But, later, the NIA took over the investigation from Rajasthan ATS on April 1, 2011.