Rajnath Singh raises Afzal Guru issue

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Mumbai, Jun 9 (UNI) Raising the issue of capital punishment for Mohammad Afzal Guru, the prime accused in the parliament attack case, BJP president Rajnath Singh today said the country wants to know why his punishment was not being executed.

Talking to reporters here, Mr Singh said, ''The supreme court's decision came in 2005, while his clemency application came up next year. Why did the government not take an decision in last two years, the nation wanted to know.'' He said, according to a report prepared in the US, more than 22,000 people were killed in terrorist activities in 2007, out of which 2,300 died in India. The report describes India as ill equipped to tackle terrorism, against the backdrop of its slow legal system, he added.

''When the government is talking of federal agency to tackle such cases, there should be federal stringent law also and BJP will support any move by the UPA government in such a direction,'' he said.

He said Home Minister Shivraj Patil should not have made a statement like ''Sarabjit ko mafi, Afzal ko phaansi'' (pardon for Sarabjit and hanging for Afzal). The Opposition leader also congratulated Sarabjit's wife, who had refused the release of her husband, at the cost of release of a terrorist.

The UPA government at the Centre has completely failed on the external and internal fronts, he alleged.

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