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Will not quit UPA alliance over Afzal's hanging: Farooq

Last updated on: February 11, 2013 21:03 IST

Union Minister and National Conference leader Farooq Abdullah on Monday ruled out quitting the United Progressive Alliance government at the Centre over the hanging of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru.

"Why should we leave the government? We have got a job to do," Abdullah said.

Abdullah was asked whether the National Conference will quit the UPA government over the Afzal issue as his son -- Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah -- had on Sunday slammed the execution of Guru, saying it would reinforce a sense of alienation and injustice among youth in the Valley.

Omar had said it will have to be proved to Kashmiris and to the world that the execution of Afzal Guru is not a ‘selective’ one.

"As far as I am concerned, the Supreme Court and the high court passed the judgment. The mercy petition filed by him to the President has been rejected. So, the matter is over," he said to persistent queries on the issue.

Asked if he thought the hanging of Guru would accelerate the separatist movement as it happened in the past after the execution of Maqbool Butt, Abdullah shot back, "You should ask this question to the chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir, who is there in the state. He knows what is the situation is like. I am in Delhi."

Bhat, a Kashmiri separatist leader, was hanged in Tihar jail in 1984 for the murder of Indian diplomat Ravindra Mhatre in the United Kingdom.

Abdullah said he felt sad that the family of Afzal Guru did not get a chance to meet him before he was hanged. But he added that the  matter of execution was over and appealed to the media not to play up sentiments.

"I too feel sad that his family could not meet him and say goodbye. But do not play it up. Don't create tragedies for the future," Abdullah said. 

"The high court and the Supreme Court passed the judgment and his appeal to the President of India was turned down. He was hanged," he said.

"How many of us would have died had his plan succeeded, had they entered Parliament and shot dead the entire Indian democracy," he said.

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