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India court sentences 38 people to die for 2008 Islamist bombing attacks

Police are seen on Friday outside the City Civil And Sessions Court in Ahmedabad, India, where 38 people were sentenced to death for their roles in the 2008 Ahmedabad bombings. Photo by EPA-EFE
Police are seen on Friday outside the City Civil And Sessions Court in Ahmedabad, India, where 38 people were sentenced to death for their roles in the 2008 Ahmedabad bombings. Photo by EPA-EFE

Feb. 18 (UPI) -- An India court on Friday sentenced more than three dozen people to death for a string of bombings almost 15 years ago that killed more than 50 people in the western part of the country.

The court condemned 38 people for the 2008 bombing attacks in Ahmedabad in Gujarat state, a part of India where clashes between Hindus and Muslims are not uncommon.

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Friday's sentence is the first time in India's history that so many people were sentenced to die in a single case.

The Islamist group Harkat-ul-Jihad-al-Islami claimed responsibility for the bombings -- which included an explosion near a hospital where victims of an earlier blast were being treated.

Forty-nine people were accused in the attacks, and the remaining 11 were given life sentences on Friday.

Authorities said the attacks were motivated by the Student Islamic Movement in India in 2007.

Executions are rare in India. The last time a person was put to death occurred in 2020 when four people were hung for a 2012 rape.

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