NIA judge Ravinder Reddy resigns hours after delivering Mecca Masjid blast verdict, cites 'personal reasons'
Telangana Judges Association. Meanwhile, Reddy's decision to resign from his post hours after pronouncing the judgement, which immediately triggered political reactions, was termed 'intriguing' by All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen president Asaduddin Owaisi.
Special National Investigation Agency (NIA) court judge Ravinder Reddy, who delivered the Mecca Masjid blast case verdict on Monday, resigned from his position citing personal reasons, according to several media reports.
India Today reported that Reddy sent his resignation hours after acquitting all five accused in the Mecca Masjid blast case and has gone on leave. However, it was not immediately known whether Reddy's resignation was in any way linked with Monday's verdict.
Reddy was in news in June 2016 when he was suspended by Hyderabad High Court on disciplinary grounds for leading an agitation against provisional allocation of judicial officers between Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, The Hindu reported. Reddy was the president of the Telangana Judges Association.
Meanwhile, Reddy's decision to resign from his post hours after pronouncing the judgment was termed 'intriguing' by All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen president Asaduddin Owaisi.
Judge who gave acquittal to all accused in Mecca Masjid Blast RESIGNS very intriguing and I am surprised with the Lordship decision
— Asaduddin Owaisi (@asadowaisi) April 16, 2018
Owaisi earlier slammed the NIA for not conducting the probe properly and letting the accused go scot-free. He said justice had not been done and that the ruling will weaken the fight against terrorism. He said it was a biased investigation and NIA was not allowed to pursue the case by its political masters.
In a series of tweets, Owaisi said the NIA and Modi-led government did not even appeal against the bail given to the accused within 90 days.
"Witnesses turned hostile after June 2014. They could not give proper statements, so everything was done to fail the victims," he said.
Nine persons were killed and 58 injured in the blast during the Friday prayers at the 17th Century mosque near the iconic Charminar on 18 May, 2007. Ten persons were named as accused in the case but only five of them were arrested and tried.
The five who faced trial included Devendra Gupta, Lokesh Sharma, Swami Aseemanand alias Naba Kumar Sarkar, Bharat Mohan Lal Rateshwar alias Bharat Bhai and Rajendra Choudhary.
Two other accused in the case, Sandeep V Dange and Ramchandra Kalsangra are still absconding, while another accused Sunil Joshi died. The NIA is still probing the case against the two absconding accused.
With inputs from agencies
Bharadwaj has been in custody as an undertrial since her arrest in 2018. The high court, however, rejected the default bail pleas of co-accused Sudhir Dhawale and 7 others.
These raids come three days after the NIA arrested Kashmiri human rights activist Khurram Parvez from Kashmir for his involvement in anti-India activities and having direct links with a banned Pakistan-based terrorist outfit