The BJP should really stop beating the drum about Afzal Guru, and banging on about how questioning his hanging is akin to anti-nationalism and sedition.
Because? It cannot continue down that road while simultaneously making kissy-face with the PDP in Kashmir — not when it is not even a year ago that said PDP was questioning the same Supreme Court judgment, with absolutely no reaction from the BJP.
“PDP has always maintained that late Afzal Guru’s hanging was travesty of justice and constitutional requirements and process was not followed in hanging him out of turn,” said a group of PDP legislators in a written statement circulated to media.
Indulge in the politics of cynical opportunish all you want — your predecessors in power were pastmasters of the form as, for an instance in point, their open avowal of “political compulsion” in backing the PDP’s Afzal Guru stance. But you know you look silly when you contradict yourself on the same issue at the same moment in time, yes?
You might, therefore, want to shift gently away from this binary:
Earlier, BJP MP Anurag Thakur also targeted Rahul Gandhi over the JNU issue. Questioning him for not visiting the families of those killed on the border, Thakur said: “Your leader goes and stands by those who support Afzal Guru… You did not go to the house of the martyred Inspector (who died in the Batla House encounter). Rahul Gandhi also could not go. But he went to JNU… Tell us, who are you standing for? Afzal Guru or those who protected Parliament House (in the 2001 attack)?”
Because if you persist, it is all too easy to turn that question around and ask you: “Who do you and your party — the same party that is assiduously pursuing ministry formation with the PDP — stand with, Mr Thakur? Afzal Guru, or those who protected the Parliament you were speaking in?”
As for you, Mr Chidambaram…
“I think it is possible to hold an honest opinion that the Afzal Guru case was perhaps not correctly decided,” he told ET in an interview.
“But being in government you cannot say the court has decided the case wrongly because it was the government that prosecuted him. But an independent person can hold an opinion that the case was not decided correctly.”
Please. Since you bring up honesty, the honest course then would have been to protest an action you thought was wrong.
What you say now, expressed in English, is: I knew it was wrong but if I said so then I would have lost power and all it brings; now that I have nothing to lose, I can suffer an attack of conscience with none of the consequences. Sheesh — at the very least, it would have been more sensible to have just kept silent.