Congress To File Review Plea Challenging Release Of Convicts In Rajiv Gandhi Assassination Case

New Delhi:Ten days after their release, Congress has said it will file a fresh review application challenging the freeing of convicts of the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case. The party had earlier termed the release of the killers as “unfortunate” and “unacceptable”.  It had also stated that the convicts have been released from prison and not acquitted, and should not be seen as ‘heroes’. According to a senior Congress leader, the petition will be filed in the next 3-4 days.

On November 11, the apex court ordered the release of six convicts including Nalini Sriharan and RP Ravichandran. This came months after the Supreme Court had granted bail to a convict AG Perarivalan on May 18. Then, the court invoked its extraordinary powers under Article 142 of the constitution to release him on grounds of poor health and good conduct. The SC’s reasoning for the release of six convicts mirrored the one during Perarivalan’s release.

Perarivalan, Nalini Sriharan, Murugan alias Sriharan, Santhan, RP Ravichandran, Robert Payas and S Jayakumar were arrested in 1991. Four of them, including Nalini’s husband Sriharan, happen to be Sri Lankan nationals.

On May 21, 1991, Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated at Tamil Nadu’s Sriperumbudur by a woman suicide bomber of Sri Lanka’s Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) during the Lok Sabha poll campaign. The killing was largely seen as a brutal fallout of his decision to send over 1,000 Indian forces to the island nation in 1987 to disarm the Tamil rebels.

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