Nalini Sriharan
Nalini Sriharan

SC issues notice, TN on Nalini’s plea seeking premature release

A bench of Justices BR Gavai and BV Nagarathna issued notices to the Centre and the Tamil Nadu government and sought their replies on the plea. The top court also issued notices on the plea filed by RP Ravichandran, who is also a convict in the case.

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Monday sought responses from the Centre and the Tamil Nadu government on a plea filed by Nalini Sriharan, serving life sentence in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case, seeking premature release.

A bench of Justices BR Gavai and BV Nagarathna issued notices to the Centre and the Tamil Nadu government and sought their replies on the plea. The top court also issued notices on the plea filed by RP Ravichandran, who is also a convict in the case.

Nalini has challenged the June 17 order of the Madras High Court, which rejected her plea for early release and cited the apex court judgment ordering the release of co-convict AG Perarivalan.

The high court had on June 17 rejected the petitions of Nalini and Ravichandran, both convicted in former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi assassination case, to order their release without even the consent of the state’s Governor.

The high courts do not have the power under Article 226 of the Constitution to do so, unlike the Supreme Court which enjoyed the special power under Article 142, the high court had said while rejecting their pleas.

Invoking its extraordinary power under Article 142 of the Constitution, the top court had on May 18 ordered the release of Perarivalan, who had served over 30 years in jail and said the Tamil Nadu Governor ought not to have sent the “binding” advice made by the state Cabinet for his release to the President.

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