Mufti Waliullah Sentenced to Death for 2006 Bombings in Varanasi

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NEW DELHI — A special Session Court in Ghaziabad has sentenced Mufti Waliullah Khan to death over deadly bomb blasts that rocked the city of Varanasi, in a trial that took 16 years to reach a verdict.

Waliullah Khan was convicted on murder and terrorism charges last week over the 2006 attacks, which targeted an ancient temple and a nearby railway station in Varanasi. Mufti Waliullah belongs to Uttar Pradesh’s Phool Pur district.

Around 20 people were killed in the blasts while dozens more were injured.

“The accused has been found guilty of murder and has been fined Rs 50,000. He will be hanged until death,” the trial judge said in a court order released late Monday.

Khan was arrested just weeks after the blasts, but the trial was delayed after lawyers in Varanasi refused to represent him, prompting the Allahabad high court to transfer the case to Ghaziabad city.

The death sentence will need to be approved by the Allahabad High Court before it is confirmed.

Nearly 500 people are on death row in India, and capital sentences for murder and terrorism convictions are common, but executions are rare.

India has executed only four men in the last seven years, all of whom were convicted of the notorious 2012 gang-rape and murder of a woman on a Delhi bus that sparked huge nationwide protests. — AFP (Inputs added)

Serial blast convict Wasiullah being escorted by the police after he was sentenced to death by a court, in Ghaziabad on Monday. — Photo: Hindustan Times
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Clarion India - News, Views and Insights about Indian Muslims, Dalits, Minorities, Women and Other Marginalised and Dispossessed Communities.

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