Ahmedabad, July 13 (IANS) The Crime Branch of the Ahmedabad police on Wednesday claimed to have arrested one of the main accused in the 2002 Godhra train burning incident from Malegaon in neighbouring Maharashtra.
This is the fifth such arrest in the last one year in the case where miscreants set one coach of the Sabarmati Express train on fire near Godhra railway station on February 27, 2002, killing 59 people, most of whom were returning from Ayodhya.
The incident snowballed into a massive communal conflagration in the state that saw over 1,000 persons losing their lives in the violence.
Giving details of the arrest, Crime Branch officials said they had picked up Imran Batuk alias Sheru, who lived in Malegaon, reported to be involved in illegal sand mining. He was one of those responsible for the train burning.
In May, the state Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) had arrested Farooq Bhana, also a key accused in the case. Bhana, a former councillor of Godhra, had escaped to Mumbai to evade arrest and later became a property broker.
The Special Investigation Team, which probed the case had named 94 persons in the chargesheet. In 2011, an SIT court convicted 31 persons, with 11 sentenced to death and 20 jailed for life. The conviction was challenged in the Gujarat High Court, where the case is pending.