Tamil Nadu Governor Banwarilal Purohit rejects mercy plea of the convicts in the case. ‘Not inclined to agree with the Cabinet’s recommendation’, says Banwarilal Purohit.
Former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi got killed in Sriperumbudur on May 21, 1991, when an operative of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam named Gayatri set off an RDX-laden belt, she wore under her belt. The LTTE was seeking revenge for the Indian government’s decision to send troops to Sri Lanka to help the island-country fight the Tamil separatists.
In 1998, a court sentenced 26 people to death for the conspiracy, but a year later the Supreme Court upheld the death sentences of only four of them – Nalini, Murugan, Santan, and Perarivalan. Three others got a sentence of life imprisonment and the remaining 19 got freed.
In 2000, Nalini’s death sentence has commuted to life imprisonment. In 2014, the top court commuted the death sentences of the other three as well, saying the Centre cannot unduly delay examining their mercy petitions. All seven people, including Nalini Sriharan, are serving a life term in the case.