Of the 49 convicts in the 2008 Ahmedabad blasts, 38 have been sentenced to death. A special court has given this verdict as well as the remaining 11 convicts to a death sentence. On July 26, 2008, a total of 22 bomb blasts took place in about 70 minutes at various places in Ahmedabad in which 56 people were killed and about 200 people were injured. 78 people were accused of being involved in these blasts. On February 8 this year, several special courts appointed to expedite the trial, in this case, found 49 out of 78 guilties. Special judge AR Patel has given Rs 2 per person over 48 out of these 49 convicts.
Also imposed a fine of Rs 85 lakh. Apart from this, he also ordered a compensation of Rs 50,000 to those seriously injured and Rs 25,000 to those less seriously injured. Some hospitals, buses, and other public places in Ahmedabad were targeted in these bomb blasts. Bombs were hidden in parked bicycles and vehicles that exploded one after the other within 70 minutes. After the blasts, several media organizations claimed that they had received emails from an organization called Indian Mujahideen claiming responsibility for the blasts. The organization claimed that these blasts were carried out in retaliation for the 2002 Gujarat riots and the demolition of the Babri Masjid in Ayodhya in 1992.
Before Ahmedabad that year, there were bomb blasts in two more cities of India. There were blasts in Bangalore just a day before that and in Jaipur about two months before that in May. The very next day after the Ahmedabad blasts, several bombs were recovered in Surat, which was planted but did not explode. Bombs continued to be found in Surat for the next several days and by August 9, the number of bombs thus recovered had gone up to 29. Police registered a total of 35 cases, out of which 20 were registered in Ahmedabad and 15 in Surat. The Supreme Court recently, in an important decision regarding the death penalty, said that no matter how dreadful the crime, the judges should consider the reasons for reducing the death sentence of the convict.
The court said that the death penalty does work as a response to society’s demand for strict action and in many cases to intimidate criminals, but now the situation has changed. The principles of punishment have now expanded and now the principle of protection of human life is also given importance. The court said that the protection of human life is also an obligation of society and there are options of the death penalty before the court as well. The perpetrators of the heinous crime can be given life imprisonment without any remission instead of the death sentence.