Tamil Nadu Cabinet meeting led by Chief Minister E.Palaniswami has recommended release of all seven life convicts of Rajiv Gandhi assassination case. Speaking to media after the Cabinet meeting, State Minister D.Jayakumar said that the decision was taken under Article 161 which states that the State Government has power to recommend the release of the convicts to the Governor.
He said, the cabinet decided to recommend to State Governor Banwarilal Purohit, the release of Murugan, Santhan, Perarivalan, Jayakumar, Ravichandran, Robert Payas and Nalini, serving life imprisonment.
The moves comes days after the Supreme Court asked the Tamil Nadu Governor to consider the mercy petition of Perarivalan seeking remission or pardon under Article 161 of the Constitution and disposed of the Centre's petition opposing Tamil Nadu government's earlier proposal for the release of the convicts.
Seven convicts have been in jail for 27 years. The Minister told that the Cabinet decided to recommend the release of six other convicts also as they had appealed to the State for premature release.
Earlier, the Central Government had appealed to the Supreme Court not to release the convicts as it would form a bad precedence as it was a sensitive case. Former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated on May 21, 1991 at Sriperumbudur by an LTTE woman suicide bomber at an election rally.
The other recommendations of the Cabinet include an appeal to the Centre to posthumously confer Bharat Ratna to Arignar Annadurai and Jayalalithaa for their contribution to the development of the State. (AIR)