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India refuses to release imprisoned Tamils due to ‘international ramifications’

India’s central government has consistently rejected the Tamil Nadu government’s proposition to release seven people who have been convicted over the killing of Rajiv Gandhi to avoid “international ramifications”, it was revealed this week.

Nalini Sriharan and six others had been convicted for Rajiv Gandhi’s murder in 1991, with Nalini in prison for over twenty-seven years now. In the past, she had pointed out that life-sentenced prisoners are entitled to a one-month leave every two years, which she had yet to be granted in her twenty-seven years. She had therefore requested for a six-month leave in order to arrange for her daughter’s marriage in February last year, which had not been granted. Charithra Sriharan, Nalini's daughter, was born in prison and is currently a medical practitioner in London.

General G Rajagopalan represented the centre and made a submission on the home ministry’s behalf going against the plea put forward by Nalini, despite the AIADMK government had adopted a resolution recommending Governor Banwarilal Purohit released the seven convicted Tamils - Murugan, Santhan, Perarivalan, Jayakumar, Ravichandran, Robert Payas and Nalini.

Nalini had said that her detention was illegal considering the recommendation of the state cabinet to release the seven prisoners had been overlooked by the governor.

Rajagopalan had pointed out that a plea had already been filed in regard to this case in April 2018 and had been rejected by the centre previously, stating that it “will set a bad precedent.”

See more from the Economic Times here, the Times of India here and the PTI here.


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