Chennai: Nalini Sriharan, the fourth accused in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case undergoing life imprisonment met her husband Murugan at the Vellore jail on Saturday, reports said.
This is the first meeting between the two after her transfer from Puzhal Prison. President Pratibha Patil had rejected Murugan’s mercy plea in August.
Nalini was transferred from Puzhal Prison here and shifted to Vellore Prison on Wednesday morning amidst high security where death row convict Murugan is lodged.
Nalini’s husband Murugan , and two others accused in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case were scheduled to be executed on September 9 following the rejection of their clemency petitions by the President of India. But they got a reprieve following the stay on their hanging granted by the Madars High Court to their plea that the punishment be commuted to life sentence because of the inordinate delay in disposing the clemency petition.
Earlier, Nalini, who too has been incarcerated in Vellore Prison had got a court order allowing her and Murugan to meet once in every 15 days in the jail premises under the watchful eyes of the wardens. But following complaints and charges of harassment levelled by Nalini against Vellore Prison officials and seizure of a mobile phone from her cell in Vellore prison, she was shifted to Puzhal Prison in June 2010.
Nalini has approached the Madras High Court asking to set her free as she has put in more than 20 years in prison and that even life-term convicts were eligible for freedom after 14 years of imprisonment. Interestingly, Murugan, Santhanand Perarivalan, the three convicts condemned to death sentence, claim that they are not ordinary criminals but political prisoners.
Arguments for and against granting of clemency for the three assassins of Rajeev Gandhi took a new turn with Congress leaders in Tamil Nadu staging demonstrations all over the state asking for the immediate execution of the three convicts. They fielded the dear and near ones of the 13 people who got killed along with Rajiv Gandhi in the bomb blast carried out by a suicide bomber of the LTTE on May 21, 1991 at Sriperumbudur.