Rajiv Gandhi assassination: President to take call on convict’s plea, says govt
The mercy petition of AG Perarivalan alias Arivu, one of the convicts serving life sentence for the assassination of former PM Rajiv Gandhi in May 1991 will be decided by the President, the Centre informed the Supreme Court on Thursday.
Perarivalan’s mercy petition was pending with the Tamil Nadu governor since December 30, 2015. After a delay of more than five years, the governor on January 25, 2021 decided that the competent authority to decide on Perarivalan’s remission was the President. Without specifying any time-frame, the Centre further stated, “The proposal received by the central government will be processed in accordance with law.”
Perarivalan had moved the SC in 2016 for an early decision on his pending remission plea. The court took serious exception to the five-year delay on part of the governor to decide the convict’s plea. Finally, on January 21, 2021 Solicitor General Tushar Mehta representing governor Banwarilal Purohit informed the court that the governor will decide Perarivalan’s petition within a week. Ahead of the hearing of the case next week, the Centre in an affidavit informed the court saying,“The governor of Tamil Nadu considered all the facts on record and after perusal of the relevant documents, recorded that the President is the appropriate competent authority to deal with the said request.”
Perarivalan was among seven persons convicted by a Special TADA court for being part of the conspiracy to assassinate Rajiv Gandhi on May 21, 1991.