Those held guilty are innocent, says ex-rail minister L.N. Mishra's son

Patna: As a court in Delhi Monday held four men guilty for the 1975 murder of then railway minister Lalit Narayan Mishra, his son Vijay Mishra said the verdict disappointed him as those convicted were innocent.

"Four of the accused in the case, convicted by the court, are innocent. I can say with confidence," Vijay Mishra told media here.

District Judge Vinod Goel Monday held four followers of Hindu sect Anand Marg - Gopalji, Ranjan Dwivedi, Santoshanand Avadhuta and Sudevananda Avadhuta - guilty of killing Mishra 39 years back.

Vijay Mishra told IANS here that the main accused in the case were still far away from the clutches of the court and law, while the four held guilty Monday were innocent.

Mishra questioned the system for its failure to punish the real accused in the last nearly 40 years.

He denied the involvement of Anand Marg followers behind the bomb explosion in Samastipur.

"Anand Margis were never involved in the kiling of my father," he said.

L.N. Mishra's grandson Rishi Mishra also said the verdict was based on the chargesheet filed by the CBI.

"The main accused in the case are still at large," he said, adding that the court should direct police to investigate why his grandfather was brought to Patna for treatment from Samastipur where he was seriously injured in the blast.

"The country should know who directed to take him to Patna that took crucial eight hours that ultimately led to delay in treatment and caused his death," he said.

L.N. Mishra's younger brother and former chief minister Jagannath Mishra said the court should order the investigating agency to reveal the purpose and motivation behind why he was targeted in Samastipur.

"Unless the purpose and motivation of this case is clear, nothing will be clear," said Jagannath Mishra, who was himself injured along with his elder brother.

L.N. Mishra had gone to Samastipur Jan 2, 1975, to declare open the Samastipur-Muzaffarpur broad gauge railway line. A bomb explosion on the dais seriously injured him. He was rushed to the railway hospital at Danapur where he died the next day.

The killing created sensation in the country as Mishra was known to be close to then prime minister Indira Gandhi. Five months later, Gandhi imposed emergency that changed Indian politics.

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