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2002 Terror Plan
10-year RI for four militants

New Delhi, November 22
Four suspected Lashkar-e-Toiba militants who had planned to trigger explosions during the Republic Day celebrations in the Capital in 2002 were today handed out 10 years’ rigorous imprisonment by a court here.

Bilal Ahmed Mir, Mohd Afzal Kumhar, Adil Nazir Keen and Ansar Ahmed, all belonging to Anantnag in Jammu and Kashmir, were held guilty by Special POTA Judge Additional Sessions Judge Ravinder Kaur under various provisions of the Prevention of Terrorism Act (POTA), the IPC and that of the Explosives Substances Act.

"It has been proved that all accused are guilty of terrorist act, as they were possessing such a huge quantity of explosives, besides Rs 34 lakh in cash," the court said, while also imposing a penalty of Rs 1.25 lakh each on them.

According to the prosecution, the four convicts, who planned to set off blasts using RDX at the Republic Day parade and its rehearsals, were nabbed by the crime branch from a private hostel at Kotla Mubarakpur here on January 14 following an information from the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) of the USA.

Over 5 kg of RDX, detonators and Rs 34 lakh in cash, sent to them from a Dubai-based hawala operator, were seized from them, the prosecution alleged.

The court, however, refused to accept the claim that the four accused were members of banned terrorist outfit LeT, saying that there was nothing on record which could link them to the organisation.

It convicted them under Sections 121-A and 122 of the IPC for conspiring to commit offences against the state and collecting arms and ammunition to wage war against the Government of India.

The four have also been held liable under the POTA and the Explosives Act for their involvement in terrorist acts by possessing explosives.

Besides the four convicts, the court absolved two other accused — Dalip B.D.Barot and Rajsh Khoda - for want of evidence.

A Mumbai-based alleged hawala trader and accused Mehboob Karim Merchant was discharged by the court in 2002 after it was held that there was insufficient evidence to initiate trial against him.

The police, in the chargesheet, had alleged that the militants, in pursuance of conspiracy hatched by LeT and Pakistani intelligence agency ISI, wanted to take revenge of the death of terrorists during the infamous Parliament shootout in 2001.

They had come to the Capital at the instructions of LeT's self-styled district commander Abu Amnar, a Pakistan national based in Jammu and Kashmir, to set off blasts during rehearsals and the parade of the Republic Day, it alleged. — PTI

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