Lawyer says one Godhra convict was minor at time of incident

"I have orally submitted before court today that Ibrahim Abdul Samol, who has been shown as a 20-year-old in case records when arrested on September 1, 2004, was minor at the time of Godhra train burning incident (February 28,2002)," advocate A A Hassan who is representing Samol said.

He made the request today when the court met to hear the prosecution and defence to decide on the quantum of punishment for the 31 accused who were pronounced guilty for murder and criminal conspiracy on Tuesday. Sixty three persons were acquitted by the court in the case.

"I have relied on the case records and arrest memo by the investigating officer while making the submission," the advocate added. According to Hassan, if Samol was 20 at the time of arrest on September 1, 2004, then at the time of the incident in February 2002, he would be below 18, that is, a minor, and hence would fall under the category of juvenile.

"I have requested the court to enquire into the age of Samol at the time of incident. The court has said that it would be passing necessary orders on March 1," he said. The court today reserved pronouncing of quantum of punishment in the case for March 1.

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