The assassination of the then Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi at Sriperumbudur near Chennai, created ripples across the world. After a lengthy trial, the culprits were apprehended and sentenced for life. Seven convicts - Perarivalan, Nalini, Murugan, Jayakumar, T Suthendraraja, P Ravichandran and Robert Payas, have been serving sentences in prison, for over 30 years now. 46-year-old Perarivalan had been seeking the suspension of his life sentence for some years now, atleast till the MDMA probe in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case has been completed. The Supreme Court had expressed displeasure over Perarivalan's plea remaining unaddressed before the Tamil Nadu Governor, for over 2 years!

The Central Bureau of Investigation had also absolved itself of having anything to do with the plea pardon and had stated, "It is for His Excellency Governor of Tamil Nadu to take a call on the issue of whether remission is to be granted or not and in so far as relief is concerned in the present matter CBI has no role. Present petitioner is not the subject matter of the further investigation carried out by the MDMA." Following this, Perarivalan was granted parole from November 9-23. This parole was granted by the Madras High Court, on 'medical grounds' and it was later extended by one week. Leaders of a number of political parties in TN have been demanding the release of the 7 convicts. Now, the TN government has expressed its decision on this issue!

The TN Deputy CM O Panneerselvam has stated that the AIADMK government firmly believes in the release of all the seven convicts in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case. Solicitor General Tushar Mehta had recently informed the Supreme Court that the TN Governor Banwarilal Purohit would decide on whether to grant pardon to Perarivalan, in the next 3-4 days! Today, OPS stated that it was the J Jayalalithaa led government which had first announced the release of the 7 convicts and had also passed a resolution, before recommending it to the Governor. The Solicitor General also added that the TN Governor would decide the remission of Perarivalan's sentence, "as per the Constitution", exercising his discretionary powers under Article 161! Stay tuned for updates...