Twenty-four years, over 500 witnesses and 100 guilty sentences and yet the main accused in the 1993 Bombay Blasts case - Abu Salem and Mustafa Dossa - continue to be in jail. Today is the judgment day as the TADA (Terrorist and Disruptive Activities Act) Court is likely to announce its orders against don Abu Salem, Mustafa Dossa and others. The other accused against whom a verdict is likely to be announced are Abdul Qayyum, Sheikh Firoz Khan, Tahir Merchant, Riyaz Siddiqui and Karimullah Khan.
Meanwhile, the state government has upped security measures across Mumbai and other places in view of the pending verdict. Security agencies have been put on high alert since morning, we learn.
On 12 March 1993 Mumbai was rocked by a series of explosions in different parts of the city and suburbs. 12 co-ordinated blasts jolted the Mumbaikars for two hours. The Bombay Stock Exchange, Air India Building, Plaza Cinema, Sea Rock Hotel, Zaveri Bazar, the area near the Worli passport office were some of the places that were targeted that day. Around 250 lost their lives and 700 were severely injured. The serial bombing inspired a book and movie by the same name, 'Black Friday'. The primary chargesheet in the case was filed in 1994 and the trial started in 1995. The blasts changed the physical and emotional contours of the city forever - scarring everyone - be it celebrity, the underworld or the common man.