On midnight on 18 February 2007 blast occurred in the Samjhauta Express, which killed seventy people and injured dozens more. Samjhauta Express runs a twice in a week which connects to Delhi, India, and Lahore, Pakistan.
The train No 4001 UP Attari Express had started its journey at 22:50 hours from Delhi for Attari with 16 coaches.Four were reserved second class sleeper coaches.
The bombs were planted in two carriages and compartments were filled with passengers. As soon as the train passed Diwana station near the Indian city of Panipat bomb blasted. Out of total fatalities many of them were Pakistani civilians. The victims also included Indian civilians and three railway policemen.
2007 Samjhauta Express Blast Investigations
Later on investigators found evidences like suitcases with explosives and flammable material and also three undetonated bombs. In one of the undetonated suitcases, a digital timer was kept in plastic bag along with dozen plastic bottles of fuel oils and chemicals. After the bombing, Samjhauta Express still went to Lahore with passengers with unaffected compartments.
In 2019 more details were revealed by the National Investigation Agency (NIA), They said, ''the terror blast was carried out in pursuance to a criminal conspiracy aimed at threatening the “unity, integrity, security and sovereignty” of India, reported Indian Express. 68 people including 43 Pakistan citizens, 10 Indian citizens and 15 unidentified people were killed in the blast. 64 out of the total killed were civil passengers and 4 were Railways officials. 12 people including 10 Pakistanis and two Indians were also injured in the terrorist attack, added report further.
When train left the railway station Diwana in Panipat at 23:53 hours and blast occurred, it caught fire in the compartment. The blast took place between Diwana and Panipat railway stations. The blast took place in two unreserved coaches. Four IEDs were planted in the unreserved compartments only two of them were exploded and the remaining two were recovered later by rescue team.
2019 investigation Report:
There were total eight accused in the case out of them only four faced the trial. Swami Aseemanand alias Naba Kumar Sarkar, the prime accused in the case, had been granted bail by the Punjab and Haryana High Court in 2015.
Other Three accused – Kamal Chauhan, Rajinder Chaudhary and Lokesh Sharma are in judicial custody in Central Jail Ambala. Three accused – Amit Chouhan (Ramesh Venkat Malhakar), Ramchandra Kalsangra and Sandeep Dange were convicted as proclaimed offenders in the case. Another accused Sunil Joshi – NIA called him the mastermind of the blast was killed in December 2007 in Dewas, Madhya Pradesh.
There were around 299 witnesses in the case and 13 of them were from Pakistan. But they never appeared in India before the trial court despite several summons and communication through the Ministry of External Affairs. Some witnesses also turned hostile during the trial since 2013.