The family of Mohammad Afzal Guru on Thursday took strong exception to Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde’s statement in which he said that Guru’s execution was mishandled.
Talking to KNS, Aijaz Guru, brother of Afzal Guru said that if Shinde is so remorseful on the Guru’s execution was handled by his department, then the government of India should return the body of his brother.
“Shinde’s remarks are simply a poll plank. The statement has been made keeping in view the ensuing Parliament elections in India especially in Kashmir where the Congress has aligned with Kashmir based National Conference,” Aijaz said.
He also took a jibe at the political mainstream of Jammu and Kashmir saying that they also talk about Guru just to reap their political benefits in Kashmir. “We have already said that if chief minister Jay Lalitha and Punjab government could save their convicts from gallows why did the mainstream parties of Kashmir failed to do so,” Aijaz asked further.
The brother of Afzal said that his family wants that Guru’s body be returned to it as soon as possible. “Everyone including mainstream, separatists, civil society, bar associations, and all those who matter should raise their voice in support of return of Guru’s mortal remains from Tihar jail,” he appealed.
Aijaz said that his brother’s execution involves many procedural lapses. “He was hanged while the death sentence of many other convicts was commuted to the life sentence by the Supreme Court. Not only this, but the Kashmir’s mainstream parties should introspect about Tamil Nadu and Punjab government’s functioning as to how they could save their citizens from gallows,” he added.
Pertinently Guru’s family had received a letter informing it about the execution plans two days after Guru was hanged in Tihar Jail in the morning on February 9, 2013.
Shinde’s while talking a Delhi based news channel yesterday, said: “As far as Afzal Guru’s case is concerned, I had already instructed and given the file four days before. And that was the job of the Secretaries (to inform his family). But something went wrong somewhere and they didn’t inform a day before but informed in the night that the following day was his execution. In such cases I am of the view that the family must be informed properly as per jail rules.”
Convicted in 2001 attack on the Indian Parliament in which 13 people were killed, Guru had repeatedly pleaded innocence and his wife Tabbasum had also filed a petition in 2006 asking for his death sentence to be commuted, which was rejected by President Pranab Mukherjee days before he was hanged.