Salem (Tamil Nadu): Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K Palaniswami said Monday his government is committed to the release of seven Rajiv Gandhi assassination case convicts and expressed hope the state Governor will act on the cabinet recommendation for setting them free.
Palaniwami’s statement comes amidst renewed calls, both from the opposition and Tamil groups, for the release of the seven, serving life terms, after the Supreme Court recently disposed of a plea of the kin of those killed along with the former Prime Minister in 1991 opposing their release. The kin had challenged the Tamil Nadu government’s earlier decision in 2014 to release the seven convicts.
In September 2018, the state cabinet had adopted a resolution recommending to Governor Banwarilal Purohit the release of the seven.
Speaking to reporters here, Palaniswami said the cabinet resolution was passed in line with public sentiment. “We wanted the seven to be released and that is why adopted a cabinet resolution and sent it to the Governor. The Governor has to decide (on the matter),” Palaniswami said.
“We took the decision based on public sentiment, adopted a cabinet resolution and sent it to Governor. We hope he will take action,” he added.
The AIADMK government September 9, 2018 recommended to Purohit the release of all seven convicts – Murugan, Santhan, Perarivalan, Jayakumar, Ravichandran, Robert Payas and Nalini.
Former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated by a LTTE suicide bomber during an election rally at Sriperumpudur near here, May 21, 1991.