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Tribute to martyrs of parliament attack
New Delhi, Dec 13 (IANS):
Published on 13 Dec. 2009 10:48 PM IST
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Indian political leaders Sunday paid tributes to those who were killed in the terror attack on parliament eight years ago that almost sparked off an India-Pakistan war. Vice President Hamid Ansari, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Leader of Opposition L.K. Advani, Congress president Sonia Gandhi and several MPs paid floral tributes to the nine people who were killed at a solemn ceremony in the Parliament House premises. Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar was also present. Five heavily armed gunmen said to be Pakistanis -- Islamabad denies the charge -- stormed parliament and opened indiscriminate fire, killing nine people instantly on Dec 13, 2001. The victims included five Delhi Police personnel, a woman constable of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), two parliament security attendants and a gardener. A journalist who was injured died later. All five terrorists were shot dead. A year later four terrorists, including convicted Afzal Guru, were arrested for the attack and found guilty after trial. Guru, who is said to be a Jaish-e-Mohammed militant, was the only accused to be awarded the death penalty. The sentence has been stayed as his mercy petition is pending. He is in Delhi’s Tihar Jail. Meanwhile. widows and families and widows of the martyrs offered floral tribute at the Amar Jawan Jyoti, along with the chief of the Anti-Terrorist Front, Maninder Singh Bitta. Sunita Devi, widow of Bikram Singh Bishtt, a cameraman who died during the Parliament attacks, said that no promises made by the Union Government had been fulfilled till date. “I take help from on my mother, father and M.S Bitta then only I am able to eke out living. A lot of promises were made when Vikram died, they said on paper that they will give us a petrol pump, a house, and a job but till now they have not asked us anything,” said Sunita Devi. Bitta accused the Union Government of not taking quick or sufficient action against the militants Afzal Guru and Mohammad Ajmal Kasab, the lone surviving gunman of the 26/11 Mumbai attacks, and demanded immediate justice. “They keep on saying that they will implement a strict law against terrorism. What law are they talking about when they cannot hang Afzal guru? They insult Supreme Court’s decision and hide the files. And they talk about 26/11! More such attacks would take place if they will not hang Kasab and Afzal guru,” Bitta said. Bitta added that he and the families of the victims would not pay homage at the Parliament, the site of the attack, unless justice is meted out to the families

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