Centre asks Tamil Nadu not to release Rajiv case convicts


New Delhi: The central government has asked the Tamil Nadu government not to release seven convicts in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case as prior consultation was necessary, official sources said Thursday.

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The sources said the home ministry has sent a communication to the Tamil Nadu government, which noted that the seven convicts were prosecuted under central laws.

The communication, referring to provisions in the law, said prior consultation with the central government was necessary in any case which was investigated by Central Bureau of Investigation.

The sources said that the ministry conveyed that if an investigation is done under central laws, its view would prevail on the issue of giving remittance.

The ministry also conveyed that the state government’s decision to set free the convicts was not legally tenable.

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J.Jayalalithaa had Wednesday announced that six men and a woman — both Indians and Sri Lankans — convicted in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case will be freed,

Jayalalithaatold the state assembly that the government had decided to release V. Sriharan alias Murugan, T. Suthendraraja alias Santhan, Robert Payas and Jayakumar (Sri Lankans) and A.G. Perarivalan alias Arivu, Nalini and Ravichandran (Indians).

All seven had been in prison since 1991, the year a woman Tamil Tiger suicide bomber blew up former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi at an election rally near Chennai.