Former Gujarat minister gets 20 years in jail for Surat bombings (Lead)

October 4th, 2008 - 4:27 pm ICT by IANS  

Ahmedabad, Oct 4 (IANS) Former Gujarat minister Mohammad Surti of the Congress party was sentenced to 20 years in jail Saturday for his role in the 1993 twin bombings in Surat.The special Terrorist and Disruptive Activities (Prevention) Act (TADA) court also sentenced five others to 20 years in jail.

The court convicted Surti, along with 11 others, in connection with the April 1993 grenade blast at Surat Railway station aimed at the Gujarat Express stationed there. Nearly 40 people were injured in the explosion.

The second blast had occurred near Sadhna School in Varacha area of Surat, killing a schoolgirl.

Surti had procured hand grenades from the late Ahmedabad don Abdul Latif for the bombings, the court said. His son is also wanted in the case.

So far all the accused were on bail.

The grenade blast had rocked the city a month after the deadly Mumbai serial blasts.

A police official said that a part of the arms consignment of underworld don Dawood Ibrahim’s D Company had reached the city to be used to cause communal tension.

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