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Press Trust Of India
New Delhi, November 23, 2012
As the clamour for speedy execution of Parliament attack death row convict Afzal Guru grow louder, Union minister Farooq Abdullah today said "justice has to be done" in the matter which is pending with the home ministry. "As far as I am concerned, the court has already decided. The Supreme Court has given its decision. The matter is now pending with the Home Ministry. The President has returned that (mercy petition) to the Home Ministry. Let's wait...Justice has to be done," Abdullah said reacting to a question outside Parliament House.

His statement came amid calls for speedy hanging of Afzal gained momentum after the execution of 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks convict Ajmal Kasab.

Earlier, BJP and Congress general secretary Digvijay Singh wanted the government to "expedite" the decision on the issue of Afzal Guru, who was sentenced to death in 2004.

President Pranab Mukherjee has returned seven mercy petitions, including that of Guru, for consideration of the Home Ministry.

Official sources said it was a normal procedure for the President to refer all pending mercy petitions for consideration to a new Home Minister after he takes charge.

After Sushilkumar Shinde took charge as Home Minister on August 1, the seven mercy petitions were sent to him for consideration, they said.