Published On : Thu, Jun 9th, 2016

Gulbarg massacre: Quantum of punishment tomorrow

The ancestral home of Zakia Jafri, whose late husband, a lawmaker for the Congress party which now sits in opposition, and was hacked to death by a Hindu mob in riots, is seen at the Gulbarg Society, a Muslim owned residential area, in Ahmedabad, India, September 16, 2015. Jafri, a frail 76-year-old, has begun what may be the last legal battle to pin blame on Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi for deadly riots that shook the state of Gujarat when he was chief minister, and claimed her husband's life. Picture taken September 16, 2015.

Ahmedabad: The Ahmedabad Court today deferred the judgement till Friday on the quantum of sentence for the 24 convicts in the Gulbarg massacre case. During the hearing, the defence said that the eight witnesses have not been able to recognize the convicts and on this basis, minimum punishment should be given.

Defence lawyer Abhay Bhardawaj said that the accused should be given a chance to reform as they don’t have past criminal records.

“The prosecution needs to prove if the accused will be a threat to society if they step out of jail,” he added. The prosecution has sought nothing less than death sentence or jail term till death for all the convicts while the defence lawyers contested that the incident was spontaneous and there were enough provocations for it.

Out of the 66 accused, six had died during the trial. Of the 24 convicted today, 11 have been charged with murder, while 13 others have been convicted for lesser offences.