PC recommends clemency to death row convict
New Delhi: In a decision that can lead to a
final view on the clemency petition of Parliament attack
convict Afzal Guru, Home Minister P Chidambaram has
recommended to the President commutation of the death sentence
of a prisoner in Tamil Nadu.
This is the first of the 28 cases, including that of
Guru, that is pending with the Centre for a decision on death
Union Home Ministry sources said Chidambaram has sent his
recommendation to President Pratibha Patil to commute the
death sentence of Tamil Nadu resident R Govindaswami to life
Govindaswami was accused of the murder of his uncle, aunt
and three cousins in 1984. He was acquitted by a trial court
in 1987, an order that was challenged by the state government
in the Madras High Court which however convicted him and
sentenced to death.
Subsequently, Govindswami moved the Supreme Court
challenging the High Court order but the apex court in 1998
upheld the High Court order, after which he sent a mercy
petition to the President.
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