1993 Mumbai blasts: Most educated Memon family member managed terror funding

On March 13, 1993, thirteen blasts rocked Mumbai including at Bombay Stock Exchange, Sena Bhavan and the Air India headquarters, killing 257 people and injuring 713.

Urvi MahajaniUpdated: Thursday, September 08, 2022, 09:41 PM IST
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PTI file

A controversy broke out over the alleged 'beautification' of the 1993 Mumbai blasts convict Yakub Memon's grave, which had been 'revamped' with marble boundary and LED lighting.

Yakub Abdul Razak Memon, brother of absconding accused Tiger Memon, was hanged in Nagpur Central Jail on July 30, 2015, for his role in the 1993 Bombay Bomb Blasts Case, after the Supreme Court of India rejected his curative petition.

On March 13, 1993, thirteen blasts rocked Mumbai including at Bombay Stock Exchange, Sena Bhavan and the Air India headquarters, killing 257 people and injuring 713. The attacks were allegedly planned and carried out by underworld don Dawood Ibrahim, and his accomplice Tiger Memon to avenge Muslim deaths during the 1992 Hindu-Muslim riots.

Born on July 30, 1962 in Mumbai, Yakub enrolled in the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India and completed his study as a chartered accountant in 1990. He founded the chartered accountancy firm 'Mehta & Memon Associates' with his childhood friend Chetan Mehta.

He founded another accountancy firm 'AR & Sons'. Named after his father, it was so successful that Memon won a "Best Chartered Accountant of the Year" award from the Memon community of Mumbai. He also formed the export company 'Tejrath International' to export meat products to the Persian Gulf region and Middle East.

Even after his arrest, Yakub earned two master’s degree – in 2013 in English literature and in 2014 in political science – from Indira Gandhi National Open University.

Throughout the years, Yakub handled Tiger’s accounts but maintained that he was not aware of his alleged crimes.

However, the police claimed that Yakub financially Tiger Memon and Dawood Ibrahim in planning and executing the bombings. Memon handled Tiger's funds, funded the training of 15 youths who were sent to a secret location to learn handling arms and ammunition, purchased the vehicles used in the bombings, and stockpiled weapons.

Police said that days before the blasts, members of the Memon family flew out to Dubai and later to Karachi. Their link with the blasts came to light after a car, owned by them, was used for the explosions.

He finally, decided to return to India and was arrested in New Delhi by the CBI on August 5, 1994. However, Memon claims that he surrendered to police in Nepal on 28 July 1994.

Subsequently, his wife Raheen, his newly born daughter and six other family members returned to India.

The special TADA court convicted Yakub on July 27, 2007, and awarded the death sentence on charges of criminal conspiracy by helping arrange finance for terror activities and possessing explosives with intent to endanger lives.

He challenged his conviction before the Supreme Court. On March 21, 2013, Yakub became the sole convict whose death sentence was upheld by the Supreme Court observing that he was the "driving force" and had played a key role in the conspiracy that "warranted death penalty". The capital punishment of the other 10 death row convicts was commuted to a life sentence by the apex court.

In 2014, the President of India declined his mercy petition.

Once the special TADA court fixed the date for his execution, he filed a curative petition before the SC, which was rejected on July 21, 2015.

He was finally hanged on July 30, 2015, and his remains were buried at Bada Kabrastan in south Mumbai.

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