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This article takes you through the events and legal developments associated with the 1993 Bombay blasts and the prosecution of the accused Yakub Memon. Memon has been sentenced to death by the TADA Court and his subsequent appeals and petitions for mercy and review have been dismissed.
|6 December 1992||Demolition of Babri Masjid at Ayodhya.|
|12 March 1993||Between 13:33 to 15:40 hours, a series of 12 bomb explosions take place one after the other at 12 places in Bombay. A total of 257 human lives lost and 713 persons seriously injured, and properties worth about Rs. 27 crores destroyed.This was the first ever terrorist attack in the world where RDX (Research Department Explosive) was used on a large scale basis after the World War II.|
|19 November 1993||Case transferred to CBI.
Judge J N Patel appointed Designated Judge of the Special Court constituted to try Bombay Bomb Blast case
|1 April 1994||TADA court shifted from city’s sessions and civil court to a separate building inside the premises of the Arthur Road Central Jail.|
|April 1994||Memon arrested from New Delhi Railway Station though he claims that he was arrested in Kathmandu.|
|19 April 1995||
Trial in the blast cases commences.
|23 March 1996||
Judge J N Patel elevated as a Bombay High Court judge.
|29 March 1996||
Judge P D Kode designated as a special TADA judge for the case.
Examination of 684 prosecution witnesses ends at the TADA Court.
|9 March 2001 – 18 July 2001||
Statements of the accused recorded by the TADA Court.
|9 August 2001||
Prosecution begins its arguments
|18 October 2001||Prosecution completes arguments.|
|9 November 2001||Defence starts arguments.|
|22 August 2002||Defence closes arguments.|
Trial concluded. TADA Court reserves its judgment
|10 August 2006||
Judge P D Kode announces that judgement will be pronounced on September 12.
|12 September 2006||
Judge Pramod Kode, Presiding Officer of the Designated Court under Terrorist and Disruptive Activities (Prevention) Act, 1987 delivered its verdict in Bombay Bomb Blast Case, Greater Bombay in BBC No. 1 of 1993.Yakub Memon sentenced to death along with other punishments.
Yakub and other convicts file an appeal to Supreme Court under Section 19 of the TADA Act – Criminal Appeal No. 1728 of 2007.
CBI also initiated proceedings before the Supreme Court for confirmation of the death sentence and appeals against the acquittal of some of the accused persons.
|28 January 2008||SC bench headed by Chief Justice KG Balakrishnan temporarily suspended the death penalty of Memon.|
|2009||Yakub approached Bombay High Court seeking consent to spend quality time with his family inside the prison premises. High Court dismissed Yakub’s petition, ruling that family meetings can take place only in the jail’s metal-barricaded interview room.|
|1 November 2011||Supreme Court begins hearing on appeals filed by the 100 convicts as well as by the State against certain acquittals.|
|29 August 2012||Supreme Court reserves its order on the appeals.|
|21 March 2013||Supreme Court dismissed Yakub’s appeal against his conviction and confirmed the death sentence given by the Special TADA Court. [READ JUDGMENT].The circumstances considered by the Supreme Court (as per the judgment)
While hearing Yakub’s appeal against his conviction and death sentence by TADA Court, Supreme Court noted his following conduct:
Yakub’s lawyer submitted before the Court that there were mitigating circumstances which which call for relaxation in the severity of sentence:
|2013||Yakub filed a Review Petition seeking review of Supreme Court’s judgment – Review Petition (Crl) No. 474 of 2013.|
|30 July 2013||Supreme Court bench headed by Chief Justice P Sathasivam and Justice BS Chauhan reject Yakub’s application for oral hearing and dismiss his review petition by circulation. [READ ORDER]|
|2014||Yakub filed a Writ Petition before the Supreme Court as the issue of oral hearing of review petitions against death sentences were being heard by the Supreme Court – Writ Petition (Criminal) No. 108 of 2014.|
|2 June 2014||Yakub’s death sentence suspended. [READ ORDER]|
|2 September 2014||Supreme Court passes is judgment in Mohd Arif v The Registrar, Supreme Court of India & Ors – (2014) 9 SCC 737 and orders for ‘open court hearing’ in review petitions in cases involving death sentences.Open hearing to take place in the review petition filed by Yakub which was dismissed.|
|24 March 2015||Open Court hearing begins in Yakub’s Review Petition. Senior Counsel Vibha Dutta Makhija argued for the State of Maharashtra.|
|25 March 2015||Open Court hearing concluded. Senior Counsel Jaspal Singh represented Yakub.|
|9 April 2015||Supreme Courtdismisses Yakub Memon’s review petition. [READ ORDER]
|30 April 2015||Death warrant issued by the Maharashtra Government for the execution of Memon. Warrant states that the execution to take place in Nagpur on 30 July, 2015.|
|22 May 2015||Memon files a Curative Petition before the Supreme Court of India.|
|21 July 2015||
Curative Petition filed by Memon dismissed by the Supreme Court of India. [READ ORDER]
Petition was dismissed in chambers by CJI HL Dattu and Justices TS Thakur and AR Dave. Bench observed:
Memon files a mercy petition with the Governor of Maharashtra.
Writ Petition filed for a stay on execution till the mercy petition is decided:
Writ Petition (Crl) No. 129 of 2015 – Yakub Abdul Razak Memon v. State Of Maharashtra
Petition refers to the 27 May order of the Supreme Court where it had quashed the “haste” death warrants issued to Amroha couple
|24 July 2015||Writ Petition for stay mentioned before the Chief Justice of India. Chief Justice communicates that he had already assigned a bench to hear the matter.|
|27 July 2015||Supreme Court bench of Justices AR Dave and Kurien Joseph hears Memon’s petition for stay of his execution pending the decision on his mercy petition. After hearing, matter adjourned for 28 July, 2015|
|28 July 2015||Memon files a fresh Writ Petition challenging the validity of the order passed by the Supreme Court in the Curative Petition. Justices Dave and Joseph disagree on the grounds raised. Matter referred to a larger bench.Matter was then mentioned before the Chief Justice of India HL Dattu who communicated that he would constitute an appropriate bench. [READ ORDER]|
|29 July 2015||Three judge bench of the Supreme Court comprising of Justices Dipak Misra, PC Pant and Amitava Roy hear the Writ Petition filed by Memon seeking stay of his death warrant.After hearing the parties, Court dictated the order in an open court dismissing the writ petition filed by Memon. Bench also disagreed with the view of Justice Kurien Joseph over the correctness of the constitution of the bench which had rejected the curative petition. [READ JUDGMENT]Court holds:
|29 July 2015||Yakub filed a fresh mercy petition with the President of India. President, as per the norm, forwarded the same Unin Government. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Singh and the top officials deliberated on the issue and advised Mukherjee to reject Memon’s plea. Late in the night, President rejected his mercy petition|
|30 July 2015||Around midnight of 29th and 30th July, a group of lawyes including Prashant Bhushan, Indira Jaising, Anand Grover and Nitya Ramakirshnan approached the CJI HL Dattu at his residence with a fresh mercy petition and sought a stay on the execution contending that there has to be a 14 day gap between the rejection of mercy petition and execution as per SC’s judgment in Shatrughan Chauhan case.The Registrar of the Supreme Court was called to CJI’s residence and CJI agreed for an immediate hearing of petition by the three-judge bench which had rejected Yakub’s petition previous day. Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi was called to represent the Union.The case was heard at the Supreme Court at 3 am. After an hour and 40 minutes long arguments, bench dismissed the petition holding that ample opportunities were given to Yakub to present his case. [READ JUDGMENT]
On 30 July 2015, at around 6.30 am, Yakub was executed at the Yarwada Jail at Nagpur.