Nalini submitted that though the State Cabinet had adopted a resolution favouring her release on September 9, 2018, the Governor has delayed taking a decision. This was mala fide and violative of Article 14 of the Constitution, she argued.
But Advocate General R Shunmugasundaram said the Union government had informed the Supreme Court that the Governor has concluded that the President was the competent authority to decide on the premature release of seven life-term convicts in the former PM’s assassination case. He also cited several apex court verdicts to contend that a decision by Governor or President was important in the case.
The bench then directed her counsel to file additional details on his submissions, and the State to file an additional counter within three weeks. The court also directed the government to file a separate counter on a plea by Ravichandran, another convict who moved the High Court seeking early release.
Meanwhile, the State Information Commission (SIC) informed Madras High Court on Monday that it would swiftly consider the RTI application filed by another convict, AG Perarivalan, pertaining to the status of his mercy petition pending before the Governor.
Perarivalan had complained that the commission and the designated first appellate authority, Governor’s Secretariat, were delaying to respond to his queries. The commission said it was responding to applications based on the serial numbers. Recording the submissions, Justice M Dhandapani disposed of the matter.