Delivering the judgment in the carnage that killed 59 people and triggered one of the worst communal riots in Indian history, Additional Sessions Judge P.R. Patel convicted 31 people but acquitted 63 for the 2002 burning of the Sabarmati Express in Godhra town.
The 63 will have to furnish a personal bond of Rs.10,000 each and surety of the like amount and take prior permission of the court to leave the country.
Asked about the reasons for such conditions after acquittal, J.M. Panchal, the special public prosecutor, contended that the quantum of punishment has not been decided by the court yet and thus the verdict has not been finally given. The court may have imposed the conditions for this reason, he stated.
Defence counsel A.A. Hasan said the lawyers for the 63 have applied to the court to grant them time to furnish these bonds and the court has allowed one month's time for the purpose.