ĎAfzalís family lost one member, but he destroyed so many of usí

For Deshraj Mavi, a gardener with Central Public Works Department, posted at Parliament House, going out for lunch with his brother-in-law ó also posted in the same department ó had been a regular feature of his working day.

But on the afternoon of December 13, 2001, he was not feeling particularly hungry and decided to skip lunch, trimming plants instead. Mavi was one of those killed in the attack that day.

Mavi's younger son, Nitin, was three when his father died. Today, the high-school student can barely remember the man his father was. "I look at his pictures to remind me of what he looked like. I do not remember much at all," Nitin told The Sunday Express.

Though he never met Afzal Guru, Nitin is happy he was hanged on Saturday morning for his involvement in the attack.

"I never got to know my father because of that attack and the people behind it. Since childhood, I have grown up hearing that Afzal is a terrorist and he deserved to be hanged," he said.

Nitin's elder brother, Virender, however, has clearer memories of their father.

Virender, then 13, had an examination at school on the day of the killing. "Papa wished me luck before going to work. When I returned home in the afternoon, my relatives told me that he had suffered a heart attack and was admitted to Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital," Virender said.

Later, Virender's maternal uncle and Mavi's brother-in-law, also posted in CPWD there, told the family about the terrorist attack.

"My uncle told us how each day, both of them used to go out and have lunch. That day, my father skipped lunch. He was shot ó twice in the chest and once in the head. Later, my relatives went to claim the body."

... contd.

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