Rajiv convicts release: TN parties up pressure on Governor again

The Supreme Court on Thursday disposed of a petition filed by the collateral victims of the bomb blast that killed former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi at Sriperumbudur, near Chennai, in 1991.

Now that the petition has been dismissed, only the decision of Tamil Nadu Governor Banwarilal Purohit stands between the seven convicts found guilty of the assassination and their freedom.

Following this development, various parties and pro-Tamil outfits have urged the Governor to order the release of the seven convicts.

While the relative of a victim and a survivor of the 1991 suicide bomber attack which killed Rajiv Gandhi said they are confident Purohit will not release the seven life convicts in the assassination case, parties, including the DMK, and relatives of the convicts demanded their immediate release.

The Congress in Tamil Nadu said there should be no pressure on the Governor over the issue. In 2014, the then J Jayalalithaa-led government had decided to release seven convicts in the case.

Former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated by a suicide bomber in Sriperumbudur in Tamil Nadu on May 21, 1991. TNCC president K S Alagiri said though the Supreme Court had ruled that the Governor could take a decision on the release of the convicts in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case, it had not suggested any particular decision on the part of the Governor.

On September 9 last, the Tamil Nadu Cabinet recommended the release of the convicts. The issue of their release is currently pending before the Governor and he had till date refrained from taking a call because of the pendency of the victims’ petition in the apex court.