Framed In Sabarmati Blasts Case, Kashmiri Man Returns Home After 16 Years

Gulzar was picked up by Special Cell of the police in Delhi and named as an accused in the blast case. He was doing his PhD from Aligarh Muslim University at the time of his arrest.

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Gulzar Ahmad Wani said he was punished for a crime he never committed.


Srinagar:  Emotions ran high as Gulzar Ahmad Wani was reunited with his family after 16 years. The 42-year-old was acquitted after spending 16 years in jail in connection with the Sabarmati Express train blasts in 2000 that claimed nine lives.

In 2001, Gulzar was picked up by Special Cell of the police in Delhi and named as an accused in the blast case. He was doing his PhD from Aligarh Muslim University at the time of his arrest.

He gets nostalgic looking at his certificates of a time when he was fully devoted to studies. Gulzar said he was punished for a crime he never committed.

"I was arrested in 2001 by showing a fake arms recovery in Delhi and put in illegal custody for 10 days. Then cases were registered from different states like Maharashtra and UP on the basis of a warrant," said Gulzar Ahmad.

Tough times fell on the family after his arrest. His aging father, a retired government employee, fought the court cases with all his saving to ensure Gulzar's release. He was in jail when his two sisters got married. His grandparents also died during that time.

"After he was arrested, his sisters got married. Marriages are occasions to celebrate, but those used to be nothing more than occasions of sorrow for us," said Ghulam Mohammad Wani, Gulzar's father.

It is a homecoming of sorts for Gulzar Ahmad. The family has suffered a lot, but now there is now hope that the bad times are just over and he will start a new life.


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