Hyderabad Blast Accused Yasin Bhatkal, 4 Others Sentenced to Death

This judgment comes three years after 18 people were killed in the Dilsukhnagar area

Ground zero of the serial blasts in the Dilsukhnagar area in Hyderabad
Ground zero of the serial blasts in the Dilsukhnagar area in Hyderabad. Credit: Wikimedia/Srikar Kashyap

On December 19, a National Investigation Agency (NIA) Special Court in Hyderabad sentenced Yasin Bhatkal and four others accused in the Dilsukhnagar blast case of February 2013 to death. Bhatkal is the co-founder of the Indian Mujahideen.

The four other people sentenced to death are Zia-ur-Rehman alias Waqas, Asadulla Akhtar alias Haddi, Tahaseen Akhtar, and Aijaz Shaikh. The prime accused, Mohammed Riyaz, is still at large.

The twin blasts occurred at a distance of 100 metres away from each other. Two improvised explosive devices (IEDs) were mounted on two bicycles, and they resulted in powerful explosions. Eighteen people died due to these attacks and 131 more were injured.

The quintet has been convicted under various sections of the Indian Penal Code, Arms Act, and Unlawful Activities Prevention Act. Their conviction on December 13 this year is the first instance where a member of the Indian Mujahideen has been convicted.

Between the period of 2004 to 2013, 1303 death penalty verdicts were given. There have been four executions since 2004.