Jethmalani’s defence of Rajiv killers not party line: BJP


New Delhi : The Bharatiya Janata Party Monday (BJP) distanced itself from its Rajya Sabha member and lawyer Ram Jethmalani’s decision to fight the case for those involved in Rajiv Gandhi’s assassination.

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BJP leader M. Venkaiah Naidu Monday clarified that Jethmalani’s decision to fight the case was in his personal capacity and the party has nothing to do with it.

“I don’t know… Ram Jethmalaniji might have moved the high court in his personal capacity as an advocate but that is not the party line,” he said.

Naidu also said that the party has “not taken any line on this”, adding he personally felt that someone guilty of such a heinous crime should not be spared.

“Anybody who does a heinous crime like murdering anybody should face maximum punishment. This is my personal view, I am very clear because there has to be a rule of law,” he said.

“To my knowledge, people who have done this heinous crime do not deserve any mercy,” he added.

Three convicts sentenced to death in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case – and facing execution Sep 9 – have filed a petition in the Madras High Court, on grounds of executive delay of over 11 years before their mercy pleas were rejected.

Jethmalani and Mohit Choudhary will appear as advocates for the the three convicts – Murugan alias Sriharan, T. Suthendraraja alias Santhan and A. G. Perarivalan alias Arivu – Tuesday when the court hears the petition.