Why secrecy over execution? Human rights groups question execution, death penalty | Deccan Chronicle
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Why secrecy over execution? Human rights groups question execution, death penalty

PTI | 10th Feb 2013

New York/London: In the wake of the hanging of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru, global human rights groups have stepped up pressure by questioning India’s executions and asking it to move towards abolishing the death penalty.

“Questions need to be asked why the Indian government executed Afzal Guru now,” New York-based Human Rights Watch’s South Asia director Meenakshi Ganguly said.

London-based Amnesty International also expressed concern over Afzal’s execution.

“Before Ajmal Kasab’s execution in November, Indian authorities used to make information about the rejection of mercy petitions and dates of execution available to the public prior to any executions. The new practice of carrying out executions in secret is highly disturbing,” Shashikumar Velath, Programmes Director at Amnesty International India said.

Guru was executed early on Saturday for providing logistical support in the attack on the Indian parliament in December 2001, in which five heavily-armed gunmen entered the complex and opened fire indiscriminately, killing nine, including six security personnel, two parliament guards, and a gardener. All five attackers were also killed.

The hanging of Guru comes just three months after India executed the lone surviving 26/11 terrorist Ajmal Kasab in a Pune jail.

“No one argues that those who engage in serious crimes shouldn’t be punished, but the death penalty is brutal and irreversible, and there is no convincing evidence to suggest it serves as a deterrent,” Ganguly said.

HRW said it opposes the death penalty in all circumstances as an inherently irreversible, inhumane punishment.

“India should end this distressing use of executions as a way to satisfy some public opinion,” said Ganguly. “It should instead join the nations that have chosen to abolish capital punishment.”

Velath alleged “serious questions have been raised about the fairness of Afzal Guru’s trial. He did not receive legal representation of his choice or a lawyer with adequate experience at the trial stage. These concerns were not addressed”.

Guru’s execution makes it more urgent for India to reinstate its previous informal moratorium on executions as a step towards abolishing the death penalty, the rights groups added.

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APR's picture
by APR (not verified) on
“Questions need to be asked why the Indian government executed Afzal Guru now,” New York-based Human Rights Watch’s South Asia director Meenakshi Ganguly said. Ms Ganguly, You are in Newyork and were not in Twin towers on the day of Sep11, 2001.
Msreek24's picture
by Msreek24 (not verified) on
Mr Ganguly, you should be ashamed of your comments, India is right in awarding death penalty to these criminals should be punished. I would ask why we took long time in executing these people when they have killed so many innocent people. If the person chooses to be a terrorist and has claimed innocent lives of the people then he is should be killed as he is no good to the society.
vr Madap's picture
by vr Madap (not verified) on
Hello Meenakshi, Why don't you let one of your kith or kin die in the terrorist attacks and then let us see your opinions, the Human Right people, why do you fight to protect the life of criminals only, What about those mothers who have lost their children, the wives who lost their husbands on the Border trying to protect the country. Do not sit in New York and give your opinion about India. People in India who are going through the pain are best to decide what is best for them. See if your organisation can change people who wanted to kill oothers, Focus on the problems, do not worry about the fit solution for these B________. Have a great day ahead.
vishnuuu's picture
by vishnuuu (not verified) on
Dear Meenakshi Gangulay, it would be better if you raise your questions on other south Asia countries rather than keeping ur eyes on India Only attitude. give a thought for our Indian Administration and Indian Courts, why is that you have never opened your mouth to what has happened to Indians brutually beheaded. Why was it you neer raise your voice when Indians have been thrown out the countries and being killed. please be diplomatic......................
TelangaNRI's picture
by TelangaNRI (not verified) on
Sorry, the sufferers live in India and not in NY

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