Reacting to the Supreme Court's verdict on the assassins of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi, Jammu and Kashmir People's Democratic Party President Mehbooba Mufti on Tuesday said the decision has made the people of Kashmir realize that laws were completely different for Kashmir and for the country.
"By this decision, the Supreme Court has once again made the people of Jammu and Kashmir realize that there is a separate law for Kashmir and the rest of the country. I think they are now sure that they have always been discriminated against be it on any issue," said Mufti.
"The honourable Supreme Court had once said that 'to satisfy the collective conscience of the country', death sentence was given to Afzal Guru. Although, there were many things which were unexplained and there were not much evidence against him," she said.
"Today Rajiv Gandhi's assassins, who was no less a symbol of Indian nationhood than the parliament in itself, which was also attacked, are not being treated in the same way. The hearing has come today which is a good thing, but I wish that they had given a similar decision in other cases such as that of Afzal guru. By this decision they have promoted a feeling of alienation in the state and it is not only me who is saying this, but the other political leaders would say the same," she added.
Earlier in the day, the Supreme Court today commuted the death sentence of three men convicted of killing former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi to life in prison.
The convicts, Santhan, Murugan and Perarivalan, had petitioned against their death sentence, arguing that there had been an exceptional delay in a decision on their mercy plea.
A bench headed by Chief Justice P Sathasivam delivered the judgement on the mercy plea.
The Centre had earlier opposed the plea by arguing that the convicts did not go through torture, agony and dehumanising experience during pendency of the mercy pleas.
Rajiv Gandhi was killed by a suicide bomber at an election rally in Sriperumbedur on May 21, 1991. Fourteen other people also lost their lives in that blast.
In 1999, Santhan, Murugan and Perarivalan were sentenced to death by the Supreme Court for being part of the group that conspired to kill Gandhi.
Their mercy petition was sent to the President of India, the last stage in the process of appeals, in 2000 and was rejected 11 years later. Their hanging was stayed in 2011 on the orders of the Madras High Court.