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HindustanTimes Sat,30 Aug 2014

Rajiv Gandhi assassin's mother happy at SC verdict

IANS  Chennai, February 18, 2014
First Published: 12:58 IST(18/2/2014) | Last Updated: 13:08 IST(18/2/2014)

Mother of AG Perarivalan alias Arivu expressed her happiness at the Supreme Court's decision on Tuesday to commute her son's death sentence in the former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi's assassination case.

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"I am happy at the Supreme Court's decision. I hope Tamil Nadu chief minister would help for my son's release. I thank all the human rights organisations, political parties, media and others who supported us," Arputhammal told a television channel here.

The Supreme Court Tuesday commuted the death sentence of the three assassins of Rajiv Gandhi to life imprisonment, holding that the 11-year long delay in deciding their mercy petition had a dehumanising effect on them.

The apex court bench headed by Chief Justice P. Sathasivam said the delay was not only inordinate but also unreasonable and unexplained.

The court said that life imprisonment would mean life in jail till end.

Rajiv Gandhi was killed in 1991. His assassins were convicted by a TADA court in January 1998 and were awarded death sentence, which was confirmed by the apex court May 11, 1999.

The three assassins - V Sriharan alias Murugan, Arivu and T Suthendraraja alias Santhan - sought the commutation of their death sentence to life imprisonment on account of the inordinate delay of nearly 11-years in deciding their mercy petitions.


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