Where is Guru's clemency appeal lying, BJP asks Centre

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New Delhi, Jan 28 (UNI) The BJP today claimed that terrorists would not have dared to strike at the courts in Uttar Pradesh had the Centre not taken ''so long'' to act on the Supreme court decision to hang Parliament attack convict Mohammad Afzal Guru.

BJP chief Rajnath Singh, in his presidential address at the party's two-day national council meeting here, asked the Centre about the fate of Afzal Guru's clemency appeal.

''I would like to ask the central government that at this point of time, where is exactly Afzal's clemency appeal lying between the Home Ministry and the Rashtrapati Bhavan?'' he asked.

Mr Singh said former president A P J Abdul Kalam had earlier stated that he had referred the matter to the Home Ministry during his tenure.

Quoting Dr Kalam, the BJP president said the Home Ministry did not return the file to him. ''What message does the government want to give to the terrorists?'' He said the terror attacks that had taken place in Uttar Pradesh over the past two months were important from the point of view that, for the first time, the terrorists had tried to terrorise the judiciary.

Mr Singh claimed that this was because the lawyers of Uttar Pradesh took a decision of not fighting the cases of terrorists.

''In my opinion, if the central government had not kept pending so long the decision of the Supreme Court to hang Mohammad Afzal, the main accused in the Parliament attack conspiracy, then terrorists would not have dared to even think about terrorising the courts,'' he said.

UNI RB-AG PK RS1618

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