Can't release Rajiv-accused Nalini now, says High Court of Madras
Responding to a petition, the High Court of Judicature at Madras has stated that it can’t release Rajiv-accused Nalini at this juncture.
Nalini and 6 others – her husband Murugan, Robert Pious, Santhakumar, Jayakumar, Perarivalan and Ravichandran – were earlier awarded death penalties for their role(s) in the 1991 assassination of former prime-minister Rajiv Gandhi. The death penalties, however, were later converted into life terms. Nalini requested the High Court to release her on humanitarian basis as she had spent 26 years in prison in the case.
When the case came up for hearing, Tamil Nadu Govt. Counsel argued that as Nalini had been imprisoned under the Explosives Act, it was up to the Centre to decide about releasing her. He also pointed out that a separate case to decide whether the Centre of the Govt. of Tamil Nadu or neither had the right to release Nalini and others in the case was pending for disposal of the Supreme Court.
Accepting the State Govt. counsel's arguments, the High Court of Madras rejected Nalini’s petition stating that the Court can’t order her release. Later, speaking to newsmen, Nalini’s counsel Radhakrishnan said that if Govt. of Tamil Nadu could reduce Nalini’s death sentence to life sentence, how it could not possess the right to release her from prison on humanitarian grounds.
"We shall file an appeal with the Supreme Court against the verdict of the High Court of Madras rejecting our plea to release Nalini on humanitarian grounds," he added.