An Indian court has sentenced 11 people to life in prison for murder in one of the many deadly religious riots that swept across the western state of Gujarat in 2002, leaving more than 1,000 dead.

Special Court Judge P. B. Desai on Friday rejected the demand for the death penalty as the prosecution failed to prove the charge of a criminal conspiracy against the defendants.

The judge also sentenced 12 defendants to seven years in prison and one to 10 years in prison in connection with the deadly riot in a Muslim neighborhood in Ahmadabad, a key city in the state, in which dozens of homes were set on fire and 69 people were killed.