Panchkula (Haryana): A special court here on Wednesday allowed NIA, probing Samjhauta train blast case, to send the material evidence collected for examination to Hyderabad-based Central Forensic Sciences Laboratory.
"The Court has permitted NIA to take the samples of Samjhauta blasts to CFSL for examination by experts," NIA Special Prosecutor R K Handa said.
The NIA had sought permission to allow CFSL experts to take material evidence of the Samjhauta Express case to Hyderabad facility for comparison with other samples collected in Malegaon, Hyderabad and Ajmer bomb blasts cases, in which the role of a right-wing activist is suspected.
National Investigation Agency's Special Judge Subhash Mehla had on Tuesday reserved judgement on the plea.
NIA counsel Rajan Malhotra said the court also directed the probe agency to inform it well in advance the date fixed by CFSL experts for inspection and examination of the samples.
He said the samples required scientific and analytical examination and various tests with sophisticated instrumental analysis which was possible only at Hyderabad.
Malhotra said the court has asked two defence counsels to remain present in Hyderabad during the inspection and examination process and fixed Rs 25,000, to be borne by NIA, as their travelling and other expenses.
The NIA on June 20 had charged right wing activist Swami Aseemanand, Sunil Joshi (now dead), Lokesh Sharma, Sandeep Dange and Ramchandra Kalasangra alias Ramji with triggering explosions in the cross-border Samjhauta Express in the intervening night of February 17-18, that left 68 people - mostly Pakistanis - dead. Earlier this month, the Punjab and Haryana High Court had dismissed a petition filed by Aseemanand challenging orders of NIA special judge, Panchkula permitting the agency to unseal the seized material in Samjhauta blast case in the presence of counsel for the accused for comparison.
The High Court had also directed the NIA court to again fix the dates for the exercise.
On August 17, the court permitted NIA to unseal the seized material of the Samjhauta blast case on August 21 and 22 at NIA camp office, Panchkula, but the defence counsel challenged the order in the High Court.
The NIA had earlier informed the High Court that various other trial courts at Mumbai, Hyderabad and Jaipur had already granted it permission for making comparison of material found at the blast sites and the initial exercise at all three places has been done by experts of CFSL, Hyderabad.
Apart from Ajmer Dargah blast, which claimed three lives and left 15 others injured, Aseemanand and Sharma – currently in judicial custody in Ambala jail - are accused in several other explosion cases across the country, including those at Hyderabad's Mecca Masjid and Malegaon.