TADA court begins pronouncing '93 Mumbai blasts verdict

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

The special TADA court hearing the 1993 Mumbai blasts case began delivering its verdict today. Four members of the Memon family, Yakub, Essa, Rubina and Yusuf, were found guilty of conspiring and abetting acts of terrorism and also having contacts with underworld don Dawood Ibrahim, and now face between 5 years and life in prison. The judge decided to acquit three other Memons, Suleiman, Hanifa and Raheen, giving them the benefit of the doubt. Yakub, younger brother of prime accused Ibrahim Mushtaq 'Tiger' Memon, was also convicted of possessing unauthorised arms. The rest of the accused, including Bollywood star Sanjay Dutt, will hear the judgements in their cases over a period of four weeks.

After hearing the court's ruling against him, Yakub lost his temper, hurling abuses at the judge and accusing him of "making terrorists out of innocents". After the blasts, which killed over 250 people in 13 explosions across the city, the Memon family fled to Dubai, and then Pakistan. Except Tiger and his brother Ayub, however, the rest of them returned to India in 1994, and were arrested by the CBI. Since then, Yakub has been in custody and has, according to his lawyer Subhash Kanse, been undergoing treatment for depression.