TN`s decision to free Rajiv assassins perverse, populist: Congress

Last Updated: Wednesday, February 19, 2014 - 20:31

New Delhi: Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa`s decision for early release of Rajiv Gandhi`s killers invited a sharp reaction from Congress, which termed it as "irresponsible, perverse and populist".

Slamming AIADMK government`s decision, AICC spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi said, "Any perverse decision is also liable for judicial scrutiny" but remained evasive when asked whether Congress will ask Centre to approach court in this matter.

He insisted that there is a fundamental difference between commutation of a sentence and release or remission.
The party has already made it clear that it has no issue with the Supreme Court order commuting the death sentence of Rajiv killers to life imprisonment.

"Every state has powers of remission but these are the powers, which are to be exercised by Constitutional functionaries" in the light of rules and regulations and the spirit of any judicial order.

"The nation cannot forget that it lost not only its Prime Minister but also 17 other Indian citizens including Tamils to terrorism. We condemn unequivocally such irresponsible statements and decisions by such Constitutional functionaries.
"... Such decisions announced in such casual fashion and cavalier manner need to be condemned irrespective of regional, populist and other considerations. This decision fails to take into account the scourge of terrorism and the spirit of Constitution," Singhvi said replying to questions.

Maintaining that the Supreme Court has not talked about release and remissions in its order, Singhvi said it simply followed an old order commuting death sentence of the accused to life imprisonment.

Tamil Nadu government today decided to set free within three days all the seven convicts in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case after the Supreme Court commuted the death penalty of three assassins Santhan, Murugan, the husband of Nalini, and Perarivalan yesterday sparing them from gallows.


First Published: Wednesday, February 19, 2014 - 20:31

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