Godhra Train-Burning Case: 8 Convicts Granted Bail By Supreme Court
New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday granted bail to eight accused in the 2002 Godhra train burning case. However, the bail plea of four other convicts was rejected considering their role.
A bench headed by Chief Justice DY Chandrachud granted bail to eight convicts who had been in jail for more than 17 years.
All eight convicts are serving life imprisonment and their sentences were confirmed by the High Court order.
The Supreme Court on Monday dismissed the bail plea of the convicts who were sentenced to death by the trial court, but it was commuted to life imprisonment by the Gujarat High Court.
While 11 convicts were sentenced to death, the trial court sentenced 20 to life imprisonment.
The Gujarat government on Monday reiterated that the culprits in the Godhra coach burning case were involved in serious crimes. Solicitor General Tushar Mehta argued in the Supreme Court that the accused had locked the door of the train from outside.
However, the accused’s lawyers said that the accused have served 17 years in prison.
On February 27, 2002, at least 58 people died when some coaches of the Sabarmati Express were set on fire at Godhra railway station in Gujarat.
The incident caused a huge uproar in Gujarat. In 2011, a local court acquitted 31 convicts and 63 others.
The trial court sentenced 11 convicts to death and 20 to life imprisonment.
The Gujarat High Court later upheld the trial court’s verdict of 31 convicts but commuted the death sentences of 11 to life imprisonment.
The convicts filed a petition in the Supreme Court challenging the Gujarat High Court order.
This appeal has been pending in the Supreme Court since 2018.