The State government has moved an appeal in the Gujarat High Court demanding enhanced punishment to the guilty in the Godhra train carnage and re-trial of those acquitted by the trial court.

The government demanded that 20 persons, who were awarded life imprisonment, should also be sentenced to death along with 11 others. It complained that the trial court did not pay much attention to the evidence the prosecution had placed to prove the involvement in the heinous crime of 63 others, and acquitted them. Among them was Moulana Umerji, who the police initially claimed was the prime accused.

“Conspiracy”

In April, special trial court judge P.R. Patel, holding the Godhra train incident a “pre-planned conspiracy,” sentenced 11 persons to death and 20 to life imprisonment, while acquitting 63 others for want of evidence.