The Tamil Nadu state government’s decision to release the convicts in India’s former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi’s assassination case caused a ripple across the nation. The Tamil Nadu cabinet on February 19, 2014 declared that they will release all the convicts with due consultations with the centre.
The state chief minister J Jayalalithaa in her statement informed “The cabinet has taken a decision to release the three convicts, Perarivalan, Murugan and Santhan, along with those four, Nalini, Robert Pyas, Jayakumar and Ravichandran who are undergoing life sentence. The decision will be conveyed to the Centre for appropriate action. If we don't get their response in three days, we will release all convicts in accordance with the rights granted under the Code of Criminal Procedure.”
The state government’s decision came a day after the Supreme Court commuted death sentences on three men involved in the assassination to life imprisonment citing the 11 year delay in deciding their mercy pleas. The Supreme Court bench headed by Chief Justice P Sathasivam and comprising of Justices Ranjan Gogoi and S K Singh then left the decision of remission for the three convicts - Murugan, Santhan and Perarivalan on the Tamil Nadu state government.
The Tamil Nadu government’s decision resulted in an emotional outburst from Rajiv Gandhi’s son and Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi in his political rally the same day. Rahul said “I am sad the killers are being freed,” he said he does not