India hangs Yakub Memon convicted of 1993 Mumbai bomb blasts – TV

A view of the Indian Supreme Court in New Delhi.

A view of the Indian Supreme Court in New Delhi.

India has hanged Yakub Memon for his role in the country’s deadliest bomb attacks that killed at least 257 people in Mumbai in 1993, two Indian television channels reported.

Memon was sent to the gallows on his 53rd birthday inside a jail complex in the western city of Nagpur at around 7 a.m. (0130 GMT), TV channels NDTV and CNN-IBN reported.

Yakub Memon likely to be hanged

India’s president on Wednesday rejected a last-ditch plea to stay the execution of Yakub Memon for his role in the country’s worst ever attack, Press Trust of India reported.

President Pranab Mukherjee rejected his petition for clemency after the Supreme Court in New Delhi ruled that he should die for his role in attacks that killed hundreds of people in Mumbai in 1993.

Shortly after lawyers for Memon, the only one of 11 people convicted to have his death sentence upheld on appeal, and activists met with India’s chief justice to ask for a 14-day delay, local media reported.

Memon is set to be hanged at the Nagpur jail in western Maharashtra on Thursday morning, according to media reports.

Authorities in Nagpur have barred people from assembling outside the jail and beefed up security in sensitive areas in Mumbai.

The Bombay Stock Exchange, the offices of Air India and a luxury hotel were among about a dozen targets of the March 1993 blasts, which killed 257 people in the deadliest attacks ever to hit India.

The case has aroused controversy because police considered Memon’s brother, “Tiger” Memon, and mafia don Dawood Ibrahim to be the masterminds behind attacks designed to avenge the destruction of an ancient mosque by Hindu zealots in 1992. Both men remain in hiding.

While the public backs Memon’s execution, several lawmakers and retired judges have come out in his support, saying the sentence is too harsh in light of the help he gave investigators in cracking India’s deadliest bomb attack case.

Calls for reprieve grew after a website last week released a 2007 article by intelligence official B. Raman, who coordinated Memon’s arrest in 1994, and said the prosecution appeared to have failed to highlight mitigating circumstances in its eagerness to secure a death penalty. Raman has since died.

Suleman Memon

Suleman Memon stands at the entrance to Central Jail in Nagpur on Wednesday, where his brother Yakub Memon, is currently detained.


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