Afzal Guru’s kin thanks RTI activist, slams Hurriyat

Afzal Guru
Afzal Guru

SRINAGAR — A day after the Central Information Commission directed India’s largest prison Tihar to make public the death warrant of Parliament attack convict Mohammad Afzal Guru along with copies of communication sent to his family informing about the date of execution, his family in Kashmir’s Sopore welcomed the step but flayed the resistance leaders for remaining dormant on the issue.

“We are thankful to the person who raised the question of Afzal’s death warrant. The Hindu brother who raised the question of Afzal is much better than the resistance leaders who have slept over the issue,” Guru’s brother Ajaz Ahmad Guru said on Thursday.

34-year-old Mohammad Guru was convicted for his role in the December 2001 militant attack on Parliament and hanged covertly on February 9, 2013.

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In a stern order, information commissioner M Sridhar Acharyulu said any RTI application (in this case seeking details of Afzal Guru’s execution) cannot be rejected lock, stock and barrel without application of mind and citing exemption under Section 8 without justifying the defence.

The Commission directed the Tihar authorities to provide RTI activist Paras Nath Singh a certified copy of the death warrant for the execution of Guru.

The case relates to Singh’s application seeking among other details the death warrant and video recording of Guru’s execution. The Tihar authorities refused to provide any information, saying it would endanger national security.

“We are helpless and had no say when Afzal was hanged. The Hurriyats slept over the issue of returning Afzal’s mortal remains. They must have had a clear programme to get back his remains. Did you hear any protest over the issue one month after his death,” Guru’s brother said.

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He said, “They (resistance leaders) shut the entire Kashmir after Afzal was hanged and achieved nothing. All they do is photo opportunities. Both the factions of Hurriyat are running only in newspapers.”

“We understand it is not easy to get the mortal remains, but where is the sustained campaign,” he asked. He said the resistance leaders should work towards a ground-level campaign that compels India and Pakistan to talk and solve Kashmir.

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