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Mumbai blasts: life term for ex-SI

Prachi Pinglay

Mumbai: The special TADA court, which is hearing the 1993 Mumbai blasts case, on Tuesday sentenced to life a former sub-inspector of police, V.K. Patil. He was in charge of the police party that allowed smuggling of weapons in to the country after taking bribe. He was also slapped a fine of Rs. 2 lakh.

On Monday, four former constables, who were part of the party, were sentenced to six-year rigorous imprisonment.

The court also sentenced six persons, who underwent weapons training in Pakistan but did not participate in the actual conspiracy, to six-year rigorous imprisonment and slapped a fine of Rs. 30,000 on them.

Special judge P.D. Kode said Patil's act of allowing the truck that contained weapons to pass through for a bribe of Rs. 7 lakh on January 9, 1993 did not deserve any leniency. "Patil had set a heinous example in front of his subordinates" when he asked for a bribe.

The court observed that a large part of the weapons went to Gujarat and there was no evidence to prove that RDX was part of this particular landing. More importantly, the targets of the serial blasts were not decided until March 1993 and Patil could not be sentenced for the actual terrorist act.

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