They met for just half an hour every year

They met for just half an hour every year

 In all the years Afzal Guru spent in jail, his family was allowed to meet him once a year for just half an hour on the festival of Rakhi.

After his conviction for conspiracy in the December 13, 2001 attack on Parliament and sentenced to death by the Supreme Court in 2005, his wife Tabassum and 14-year-old son Ghalib –who live in Kashmir’s Sopore town- used to wait for 364 days to meet Afzal in Tihar Jail.

“Once a year, Tabassum along with Ghalib and Afzal’s brother Yaseen, travelled to Delhi since 2005 to meet him on Rakhi festival when everyone, including some criminals convicted of death sentence, are allowed to meet their family members for half an hour,” Afzal’s lawyer N D Pancholi told Deccan Herald. 

Pancholi, who met Afzal 15 days ago, said he was positive that his mercy plea would be accepted by the President.

“There was no sign of depression and he was looking forward. He used to always ask about his family members when I visited him. He was concerned about his son and his future,” Pancholi said.

Whenever he was briefed about the legal status of his mercy plea, he generally kept quiet and listened to the legal proceedings. “He used to read documents related to his case,” he said.

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