TAMIL NADU

When will the verdict be out, ask undertrials Coimbatore Serial Blasts

Staff Reporter

They stage sit-in inside special court

Coimbatore: Forty-nine undertrials in the Coimbatore serial blasts case staged a sit in agitation inside the Special Court for Bomb Blast Cases on Wednesday asking the court to announce the date on which the judgement will be pronounced. left 58 people dead and more than 200 injured besides damages to properties worth several crores, when the then BJP leader L.K. Advani visited Coimbatore for electioneering.

The Special Investigation Team of the CB-CID and the Coimbatore City Police arrested 166. Most of them were arrested within a few months of the serial blasts.

After the initial legal process in the Judicial Magistrate Court No-V, the court of original jurisdiction, the case was committed to the Special Court for Bomb Blast Cases (court of appropriate jurisdiction). Charges were framed against the accused on October 23, 2001 and the trial commenced on March 7, 2002. The chief and cross examinations were completed on January 21, 2006. The prosecution and defence completed their arguments some months back.

The defence counsel said that on Wednesday that 49 undertrials, who appeared before the court for the routine petition hearing and remand extension, staged a sit-in inside the Special Court seeking the presiding officer, K. Uthirapathy to announce the date on which the verdict would be pronounced. The undertrials refused to leave the court hall till 4.30 p.m.

Usually, security is strengthened around the court whenever the undertrials used to be brought for remand extension or trial. Traffic on the LIC Road towards Nanjappa Road used to be diverted via Nehru Stadium.

On Wednesday, because of the sit-in by the undertrials, the security cordon around the court premises and the traffic diversion continued till evening.

The defence counsels pointed out that the judge and other officials convinced the undertrials to wait for two more remand extensions and were given an indication that the verdict date would be announced by mid-July. Subsequently, the undertrials withdrew the sit-in protest in the evening and boarded the police escort vehicles and left for Coimbatore Central Prison.



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