Abdul Karim Tunda acquitted in 1993 train blasts case, two given life term

Irfan and Hamiduddin were sentenced to life imprisonment for planting the bombs, their counsel Abdul Rashid told reporters

Abdul Karim Tunda (photo: @SANKETG88/X)
Abdul Karim Tunda (photo: @SANKETG88/X)


A special court in Rajasthan's Ajmer on Thursday acquitted Abdul Karim Tunda in the 1993 serial train blasts case, with his lawyer saying the prosecution could not provide enough evidence to prove the charges.

Two other accused — Irfan and Hamiduddin — were, however, sentenced to life imprisonment by judge Mahaveer Prasad Gupta of the Terrorist and Disruptive Activities (Prevention) Act (TADA) court. The police had taken the three to the court from Ajmer Central Jail.

The 81-year-old Tunda, a close aide of wanted terrorist Dawood Ibrahim, was accused of carrying out blasts in five passenger trains in December 1993 to mark the first anniversary of the Babri Masjid demolition.

The TADA court had framed charges against Tunda, the main accused, and Irfan alias Pappu and Hamiduddin on 30 September, 2021, over the blasts in passenger trains in Lucknow, Kanpur, Hyderabad, Surat and Mumbai on the intervening night of 5-6 December, 1993.

Two persons were killed and at least 22 injured in the explosions in Mumbai-New Delhi Rajdhani Express, New Delhi-Howrah Rajdhani Express, Howrah-New Delhi Rajdhani Express, Surat-Baroda Flying Queen Express and Hyderabad-New Delhi AP Express.

"The court has acquitted Abdul Karim Tunda of all the charges framed against him. He is completely innocent. He has been acquitted of every section of every act by the court. The prosecution could not provide enough evidence to prove the charges," Tunda's counsel Shafquatullah Sultani told reporters in Ajmer.

He said probe agencies created a base that Tunda had helped other accused in making bombs, which they planted after being inspired by him. The defence presented facts before the court, and there was no direct evidence against Tunda or confession statement against him, the counsel said.

Irfan and Hamiduddin were sentenced to life imprisonment for planting the bombs, their counsel Abdul Rashid told reporters. "Hamiduddin and Irfan have been found guilty. They were convicted for planting bombs and have been sentenced to life imprisonment. They will appeal before the Supreme Court," Rashid said.

Hamiduddin has been in jail for the last 14 years and Irfan for the last 17 years. After being sentenced to life imprisonment, Hamiduddin told waiting media persons outside the court, "I respect the judgement of the court. I will appeal the judgement in the Supreme Court."

According to the court order, the prosecution had appealed for strict punishment to the accused for their involvement in criminal conspiracy and for terrorising the country by plating bombs in long-distance trains and making efforts to create hatred among communities, besides damaging railway property and lives, the order said.

The accused, on the other hand, appealed before the court to acquit them based on the term spent in jail during the investigation.

However, the court observed that the activities of the accused were of a serious nature and neither is the court capable of acquitting them of life imprisonment considering the jail term, nor did the crime committed by the accused deserve to be "acted upon softly".

Besides TADA, the accused were also charged under sections of the Indian Penal Code, Explosive Substances Act, Prevention of Damage to Public Property Act and the Indian Railways Act.

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