NEW DELHI: Criticised for not informing Afzal Guru’s execution date to his family in time, the government may allow them to offer prayers at the burial site. “We can consider family’s wish to perform fatiha,” said Union home minister Sushilkumar Shinde parrying questions on the execution of parliament attack convict Afzal Guru that was kept under wraps till the time of hanging.
Sticking to his guns, Shinde said Guru’s execution was not a political decision and every step of the laid procedure and law, including sending a letter by speed post to his family about the decision of execution, was followed.
When being queried that Guru’s family got the letter on Monday, two days after his execution, Shinde said the letter was sent by the jail authorities as per the established procedure on February 7 midnight.
He evaded questions on his ministry’s duty to inform the family in time saying it was done as per the jail manual and the ministry does not keep a track of it.
Explaining secrecy in Guru’s case, Shinde said the case was extremely sensitive case and the government had to be very careful and even as it is it the government maintains secrecy in such matters. “If everything is open and transparent, country will not run,” Shinde said.
Explaining his role in Guru’s case, Shinde said, “my job was to see the evidence produced in the court of law, and the judgments pronounced by the high court and the Supreme court.”
When asked why Guru was hanged before the killers of Rajiv Gandhi and Punjab chief minister, who were convicted much earlier, Shinde said, both the cases are still pending in the Supreme Court and in the consideration of judiciary.