In a major development, Panchkula's special NIA (National Investigative Agency) court on Monday deferred the verdict in the 2007 Samjhauta Blast case. The next hearing will take place on March 14. The hearing was deferred after a Pakistani national, who lost a member of her family in the blast, moved an application in the court seeking to make her statement in the case in the court.
In the application. she has stated that she was not granted the visa because no proper summon was served to her in the case. Further, the application states that witnesses in the blast case are ready to appear before the court with their evidence.
On Monday, during the hearing in the court in Haryana's Panchkula district, Swami Aseemanand, one of the main accused appeared before the court. The hearing began at 4 pm and went on till 5 PM.
Read the copy of the application plea here:
The Samjhauta Express, also known as the Friendship express, was hit with a blast close to midnight on February 18, 2007. The incident took place near Panipat, resulting in 68 people losing their lives and a number of others suffering injuries.
A total of 299 witnesses were in the case, but only the statements of 224 were recorded by the National Investigation Agency (NIA).
The investigation conducted by the NIA over a period of almost one year established that the entire conspiracy was allegedly hatched between 2005 and 2007 by Swami Aseemanand, Sunil Joshi and their associates like Ramachandra Kalsangra, Sandeep Dange, Lokesh Sharma and others at different places including Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh.
In 2011, the NIA filed a chargesheet naming Swami Aseemanand and the likes of Joshi (now deceased), Lokesh Sharma, Sandeep Dange and Ramachandra Kalsangra as the accused in the Samjhauta Express case.