The verdict came after NIA special judge Jagdeep Singh dismissed the plea filed by a Pakistani woman for examining eyewitnesses from her country, saying it was devoid of any merit
New Delhi: The anti-terror court in Haryana acquitted Swami Aseemanand and three others linkes to the 2007 Samjhauta Express bombing that killed nearly 70 people. The monk has been allegedly involved in three terror attacks. The National Investigation Agency (NIA) was unable to prove their involvement in the attack that was allegedly planned to avenge the terror strikes on Indian temples.
All the four accused, Naba Kumar Sarkar alias Swami Aseemanand, Lokesh Sharma, Kamal Chauhan and Rajinder Chaudhary have been acquitted by the court, NIA counsel Rajan Malhotra said.
On February 18, 20017, the train from Delhi to Pakistan's Lahore was bombed near Panipat in Haryana. Two coaches of Sanjhauta Express were destroyed and 68 people were dead. Most of the victim were Pakistani nationals.
A Pakistani woman requested the court to examine some eyewitnesses from her country. The NIA special judge Jagdeep Singh dismissed it before pronouncing the verdict.
NIA took over the probe in July 2010 after a case was registered by the Haryana Police.
In June 2011, the NIA filed a charge sheet after its probe.
Swami Aseemanand, Lokesh Sharma, Kamal Chauhan and Rajinder Chaudhary, among the eight, faced trial after appearing before the court.
In December 2007, the alleged mastermind of the attack Sunil Joshi was shot dead in Dewas district, Madhya Pradesh.
Ramchandra Kalsangra, Sandeep Dange and Amit were declared proclaimed offenders. There were the other three accused, who could not be arrested.
RSS-linked Swami Aseemanand was out on bail and the other three were in judicial custody.
Five men associated with the Hyderabad's Mecca Masjid blast in 2007 were acquitted last year and Aseemanand was one of them. He was also acquitted in 2017 with respect to the Ajmer Dargah blast case.
The accused were believed to be upset with the terror attacks on Hindu temples - Gujarat's Akshardham, Jammu's Raghunath Mandir and Varanasi's Sankat Mochan Mandir - according to the conclusion drawn by the NIA.
The train that found Pakistanis travelling in large numbers was bombed reportedly to seek revenge against the attacks on temples of the country.
In the charge sheet, the NIA had reportedly said that the accused had conspired together and formed the theory ''bomb ka badla bomb'.
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Last Updated Mar 20, 2019, 11:22 PM IST