Govt unlikely to give Afzal Guru's body to family
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The government is likely to turn down the request of family of Afzal Guru, who was hanged and buried in Tihar jail, for handing over his body.
A senior Home Ministry official said a final decision in this regard will be taken soon and the Jammu and Kashmir government will be informed about it.
The state government had forwarded a letter sent by Tabassum, wife of Parliament attack convict Afzal, to Deputy Commissioner of Baramulla in North Kashmir demanding handing over of his body.
The Home Ministry official said Afzal was buried inside Tihar jail complex in line with the prison manual and the government has no plans to hand over the body considering various aspects, including the law and order situation in the state.
Various outfits including main opposition party in the state PDP and separatist groups have been demanding handing over the body of Afzal, who was hanged on February 9 after his conviction in the 2001 Parliament attack case.
The Kashmir Valley was agog with rumours yesterday that Afzal's body had arrived and was being buried in the cover of darkness. The news spread like a wild fire through social networking sites.
Last week, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had expressed his displeasure to Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde over the delay in informing Afzal's family about his hanging.
Singh told Shinde that Guru's family should have been informed in advance about the execution carried out last Saturday morning at Tihar Jail here for his role in 2001 Parliament attack case.
Afzal was buried inside the Tihar jail alongside Kashmiri separatist leader Maqbool Bhat, who was also interred in the jail complex after his hanging in 1984.
The mortal remains of Bhat were not handed over to his family.
The government has already said it will allow close relatives to visit Afzal's grave, an offer rejected by the family saying they want nothing but his body.