BJP calls Omar's remarks on Afzal Guru unfortunate

Abdullah had tweeted that if J and K Assembly had passed a resolution against the death sentence given to Afzal Guru as was done by the Tamil Nadu Assembly for the killers of Rajiv Gandhi, the reaction would not have been as muted as it is now.

Guru is on death row and the Union Ministry of Home Affairs has recommended to President Pratibha Patil that the mercy petition filed on behalf of Guru, a Parliament attack convict, be rejected.

"This is a sensitive issue and Omar Abdullah's comments on it are unfortunate. Had a Hurriyat leader made such remarks it was understandable but a responsible chief minister should not have said so. At a time when the Supreme Court has already given the death sentence, raking up this debate is unfortunate," BJP spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain said.

Another party spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad insisted that any person who seeks to break India's sovereignty and integrity or kills a former Prime Minister and given a death sentence should be executed.

"BJP is clearly of the view that all those who have been given capital punishment after due process of law, including confirmation by the Supreme Court and whose clemency plea has been rejected by the President, then the capital punishment should be executed," he said.

Prasad insisted there is a need to understand that capital punishment is given in the rarest of rare cases.

"All those who are involved in terrorist activities or in attacking the sovereignty and integrity of India or killing a former Prime Minister of India certainly fall in this category," he said.

He maintained that integrity and unity of the country is far bigger than a party or political divide and there is a need to understand this.

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