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Mirwaiz Umar Farooq slams death sentence to Kashmiri youth

"The verdict of a trial court of West Bengal, awarding death sentence to Muzaffar Ahmad Rather of Jogipora, Kulgam (in south Kashmir) after being in jail for 14 continuous years is against the internationally accepted norms of justice and fair play," he said in a statement at Srinagar.

By: PTI | Srinagar |
Updated: January 23, 2017 8:03:35 pm
mirwaiz Umar Farooq, mirwaiz Umar Farooq detained. mirwaiz Umar Farooq arrested, mirwaiz Umar Farooq march, kashmir, srinagar, india news The West Bengal court’s verdict awarding death sentence to a Kashmiri youth after being in jail for 14 years is “against the internationally accepted norms of justice”, Moderate Hurriyat Conference chief Mirwaiz Umar Farooq said on Monday. (Source: AP Photo)

The West Bengal court’s verdict awarding death sentence to a Kashmiri youth after being in jail for 14 years is “against the internationally accepted norms of justice”, Moderate Hurriyat Conference chief Mirwaiz Umar Farooq said on Monday. “The verdict of a trial court of West Bengal, awarding death sentence to Muzaffar Ahmad Rather of Jogipora, Kulgam (in south Kashmir) after being in jail for 14 continuous years is against the internationally accepted norms of justice and fair play,” he said in a statement at Srinagar.

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His reaction came after three Lashkar-e-Taiba militants, including two Pakistani nationals arrested by BSF in 2007 from the Indo-Bangladesh border at Petrapole, were on January 21 sentenced to death by the court in Bongaon in West Bengal’s North 24-Parganas district in a case of waging war against the government. They were arrested by BSF while trying to enter India through its international border with Bangladesh at Petrapole on April 4, 2007.

The separatist leader claimed that Rather had been “targeted for being a Kashmiri”. “Indian judiciary had displayed miscarriage of justice in cases of Kashmiris earlier and this was yet another addition to this long list,” Mirwaiz said.

He also called Rather’s parents over phone and expressed solidarity with them, asking them not to feel alone in this hour of difficulty, the statement said. In a separate statement, hardline Hurriyat Conference chairman Syed Ali Shah Geelani expressed “deep concern” over the pronouncement of death sentence to Rather. “Judiciary was thought the last resort for justice but instead they are acting as a tool for injustice. Indian judiciary has never delivered justice when it comes to people of the state (Jammu and Kashmir) and their decisions and rulings are always influenced by biased approach and politics,” he alleged.

Geelani said the death sentence was “mockery of justice” and people of Jammu and Kashmir never “reposed faith in Indian judiciary” as they have witnessed how “these institutions were influenced in (Parliament attack convict) Afzal Guru’s case. Guru, a resident of Sopore township of north Kashmir, was hanged in Delhi’s Tihar jail on February 9, 2013.

Geelani alleged that Kashmiri youth, arrested outside the state, were convicted and implicated on fake allegations and “even legal consultation or assistance is not provided and hence the verdicts declared by court are full of flaws.”

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