NEW DELHI -- While differing opinions were expressed over the hanging of Yakub Memon during the past week, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has censured Shatrughan Sinha, a senior leader from his own party, for signing a petition that asked President Pranab Mukherjee to stay the execution.
The 1993 bomb blasts convict was executed at the Nagpur Central Jail on Thursday morning.
"Yes, he has," said Jaitley, responding to a question by the Times Now news channel on whether Sinha, the Bhartiya Janata Party lawmaker from Patna, had embarrassed the party.
Sinha was among the several eminent Indians including former Supreme Court judges, politicians and activists, who wrote a letter to Mukherjee, this week, requesting him to stay the execution on the grounds that "disturbing aspects of this case which make the award of death sentence of Yakub Memon as grossly unfair, arbitrary and excessive."
On Thursday, Jaitley said that it was "extremely sad" that Sinha had gone against the party's ideology which did not endorse any leniency against those who orchestrated terrorist attacks like the 1993 Mumbai bomb blasts and the 26/11.
Shortly after Memon was hanged, the BJP leader reiterated that he was against the death penalty.
As an artist, as a human I condemn Capital punishment. But indeed justice should be done: Shatrughan Sinha on Yakub. pic.twitter.com/SCKsKcYjht— ANI (@ANI_news) July 30, 2015
Jaitley also slammed Congress Party leader Shashi Tharoor, who said that the death penalty is a pointless practice which does not act as a deterrent, and reduces the state to the "level of murderers and terrorists."
"Because of the advent of terrorism in India we are still not in a position to abolish the death penalty," the BJP leader said.