New Delhi, Jun 1: Home Ministry is yet to submit its report on Parliament attack case convict Afzal Guru, currently on death row, to the President.
Briefing reporters about the number of mercy petitions currently with his ministry, Home Minister P Chidambaram today said there are total 31 cases, out of which 19 have been resubmitted with decision on 11 cases in the last 30 months.
“In the two-and-half years that I have been in the office, we have resubmitted 19 cases and 11 have been decided. I am expecting decision on remaining eight. “So records speak for itself. The case of Afzal Guru is not required to be resubmitted, it is a case required to be submitted. It will be submitted as soon as we reach there which is not far away,” the Home Minister said.
Guru was convicted of conspiracy in the December 2001 attack on the Indian Parliament and was sentenced to death by the Supreme Court of India in 2004. The sentence was scheduled to be carried out on 20 October 2006.
Afzal was given a stay of execution following a mercy petition filed by his wife and he remains on death row.
The Home Minister also noted that while between 1998-2004, 14 cases were sent to the President and no case was decided, during May 22 2004 to November 13 2008, when his predecessor was in office, he resubmitted the 14 cases and submitted 14 fresh cases. “28 cases were submitted and two were decided,” he said.
Asked about the killers of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi, he said that “case has been submitted according to the serial order...in date of the conviction and date of the mercy petition. According to that it has been submitted.”
On whether there was any time frame under which these petitions can be decided, he said, “I cannot give a time frame. My duty is to resubmit cases and it is for the President to take a decision. Neither you nor I should comment on that.” PTI