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Afzal and Advani
by Tahir Khan
2008-01-18 10:02:50
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Over the last few years, a big debate has been ongoing in the Indian media concerning whether Afzal guru should be given the death sentence. The issue is that Indian intelligence have failed to bring any solid proof which shows Afzal Guru was involved in the Indian parliament attack that took place on December 13, 2001, and, on the other side, Lal Krishna Advani, a prominent figure in Indian politics, was openly involved in the Babri Masjid demolition case, proven by Indian intelligences, yet is moving freely.

Advani has more severe charges due to his involvement in the Babri Masjid demolition case, right now he is a candidate for prime ministership of India from Bhartiya Janta Party. However, let us check the whole scenario one by one and assess what is really behind both the figures and both events.

Lal Krishna Advani came to light following the Babri Masjid demolition event which was took place on December 6 1992 and was organized and orchestrated by the Bhartiya Janta Party for her political mileage. Advani was the organizer of that whole event and at last he successfully demolished the Babri Masjid on the fabricated history and insight hatred into the Hindus and Muslims from that event. The CBI (Central Bureau of Investigation of India) has pressed charges under various sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) - namely, 153A and 153B (spreading communal frenzy), 147 (rioting), 149 (committing a criminal act with a common object), and 505 (creating ill will among different classes at a place of worship).

This has all been based mainly on the statements of witnesses and video footage and the CBI's charge sheet has alleged that the accused (Lal Krishna Advani) was present at Ayodhya (Babri Masjid demolition site) and made provocative speeches, thereby leading to the unlawful assembly of people and the violence and the demolition. The charge of criminal conspiracy under Section 120B of IPC would have made the accused responsible for the demolition, even if they were not directly involved in the actual commission of the crime.

Now we turn to Afzal Guru. Afzal Guru is a Kashmiri facing the death sentence and currently detained in India’s notorious Tihar jail. He is accused of involvement in the attack on the Indian Parliament five years ago. The issue is that there is no direct evidence against him and he is known not to have injured or harmed anyone, the Courts itself have found that the investigating agencies deliberately fabricated evidence and forged documents against him and he was even denied an opportunity to defend himself; he did not even have a lawyer.

On December 13 2001 the Indian parliament was attacked, five of the attackers were killed by the security forces. Over the next two days the investigating agencies, together with a “special cell” of the Delhi Police, detained four persons, all Kashmiri, and charged them with the offence of conspiring to attack the Parliament under India’s notorious Prevention of Terrorism Act (POTA). One of those arrested was Afzal Guru. The investigating agencies itself come under a question mark due to their way of work, how they proof Afzal Guru as a culprit of the parliament attack.

Now India is becoming an increasingly authoritarian country, democratic spaces are being closed down. In many Indian states, including Kashmir, human rights violation is open, not even covered by the media. India is known as democratic country but the present Indian jurisprudence behave like fascists and have been hijacked by the few fanatics that use it for their own benefit and political mileage. This will eventually bring destruction for their people and country leaving the Afzal Guru story as the tip of the iceberg.

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Emanuel Paparella2008-01-18 12:47:41
It is intriguing that both China and India officially designate themselves as republics, the implication being that they are democratic countries. Well, we know better. We know that China for sure is far from being a parliamentary and/or representative democracy. Now we are being told that India too is going the way of authoritarianism. Some say that Plato is turning his grave, but then again, it was him who in his Republic advocated the rather elitist authoritarianism of the lovers of wisdom. It’s a paradox, as he found out when he went to Syracuse.

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