Delhi govt backs death for Afzal

Delhi govt backs death for Afzal

Mohammed Afzal Guru. AFP

Guru was awarded death sentence by a Delhi court on December 18, 2002, after being convicted of conspiracy for the Parliament attack on December 13, 2001, waging war against the country and murder.

The death sentence was upheld by Delhi High Court on October 29, 2003, and his appeal was rejected by the Supreme Court two years later on August 4, 2005.

The Delhi Government sent the file on the mercy petition of Guru to Delhi Lieutenant Governor Tejinder Khanna after it received the 16th reminder from the Union Home Ministry recently seeking its opinion on the matter.

“We don’t have any problem with the Supreme Court verdict but the implications of the law and order situation should be closely examined while carrying out the execution,” a top government official said on Tuesday.

Further action

Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit said “the file has been moved for further action.”
Top government sources said the Delhi Home Department has sent the file to the office of the lieutenant governor, who will examine it and send it back. The Home Department will then forward the file to the Home Ministry.

The Delhi government, in a separate communication to the Home Ministry, has replied to the latest reminder on the matter, the sources said. It has been dilly-dallying the matter for nearly four years and the capital punishment given to Pakistani terrorist Ajmal Amir Kasab in the Mumbai attacks case brought the issue under fresh focus.

A Delhi sessions court fixed the date of his hanging on October 20, 2006, in Tihar Jail. Following this, Afzal filed a mercy petition with the President who forwarded it to the Home Ministry for its comments. According to procedure, the Home Ministry sent the file to the Delhi Government’s Home Department for its comments.

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