Tuesday, 21 July 2015

Mumbai bomber Yakub Menon's mercy plea rejected

Source: BBC News (21 July 2015)


India's Supreme Court has rejected a final mercy plea of a man found guilty of financing the 1993 serial bombings in the western city of Mumbai.

Yakub Memon will be the first person to be executed in India since a Kashmiri man, Afzal Guru, was hanged in 2013 for the 2001 attack on India's parliament.

The blasts in India's financial capital killed 257 people and wounded 713.

The attacks were allegedly organised to avenge the killings of Muslims in riots a few months earlier.

Memon is scheduled to be executed later this month. Before the Supreme Court hearing, the Maharashtra state government announced plans to hang him on 30 July.

In 2007, a special court in Mumbai handed out the death penalty to Memon, a chartered accountant, for playing a key role in the bombing conspiracy.

He is now lodged in a prison in the western city of Nagpur.

A total of eight members of the Memon family were initially accused of masterminding the bombings and dispersing funds for the attacks.

The eldest brother fled the country, and three other family members were acquitted for lack of evidence.

The alleged masterminds of the blasts, Dawood Ibrahim and Tiger Memon, have been on the run since 1993.

Executions are rarely carried out in India, but in the last four years there have been two hangings in the country.

Mohammed Ajmal Qasab, the sole surviving gunman from the 2008 Mumbai attacks, was executed in November 2012.

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