Srinagar: Kashmir High Court Bar Association (KHCBA) Tuesday said that the commutation of Devinderpal Singh Bhullar’s death sentence to life imprisonment by India’s Supreme Court “has exposed the double standards of the India’s judicial system.”
“The commutation of death sentence and awarding of life imprisonment in lieu thereof to Devinderpal Singh Bhullar, who had been found guilty in the killing of 9 persons and injuring 15 others in a bomb blast in Delhi in 1993, has further exposed the double standards of Indian Judiciary and has shown as to how different yardsticks are applied by the government of India and its judicial apparatus in dealing with same kind of cases,” a statement issued by the KHCBA said.
The statement said that Mohammad Afzal Guroo who was convicted and sentenced to death by a Sessions court in 2002 and whose death sentence was confirmed by Delhi High Court in 2003 and Supreme Court of India in 2005 and whose Mercy Petition remained pending with President of India for long 8 years and was decided only in February, 2013, was hanged to death by the Indian Jail authorities on February 9 2013 without informing his family and his dead body was also not returned to his family.
“However, despite his death sentence having been confirmed by High Court and Supreme Court and his Mercy Petition dismissed by the President of India in 2011, Devinderpal Singh Bhullar was given reprieve by the Supreme Court of India on a Curative Petition,” the statement said, adding “This amply shows that there is no rule of law in India and India is leaving no stone unturned in subjugating and suppressing the voice of people of Kashmir for claiming their right of self-determination.”
The lawyers’ body said that “Kashmiris who are involved in a freedom struggle have been all along singled out by the Indian State and have been subjected to cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment and punishment for asking for their right of self-determination.”
“This act of India only deserves condemnation from all quarters,” the statement said.