Chennai: AIADMK senior and State Fisheries Minister D. Jayakumar who exuded confidence that Govrnor Banwarilal Purohit will take a positive decision on the release of seven convicts in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case, dared the DMK to convince its ally, the Congress, in respecting the feelings of the people of Tamil Nadu on setting the convicts at liberty.
“Will DMK’s new president M. K. Stalin prevail upon his ally, the Congress to respect the sentiments of the people on releasing the seven convicts?” Mr. Jayakumar sarcastically asked and said the DMK had done precious little on the issue. Speaking to reporters here on Tuesday Mr. Jayakumar taunted the DMK chief asking whether he would snap ties with the Congress if it refused to respect the people’s feelings.
“Is Stalin prepared to announce that he would quit the alliance if Congress refused to respect the people’s sentiments,” Mr. Jayakumar asked. “We are confident that the Governor (Banwarilal Purohit) will respect the overall feelings of the people of Tamil Nadu and approve the Cabinet decision on their release,” he said.
The state Cabinet led by Edappadi K. Palaniswami had on Sunday decided to release V. Sriharan alias Murugan, T. Suthanthiraraja alias Santhan, A.G. Perarivalan alias Arivu, Jayakumar, Robert Payas, Ravichandran and Nalini, all life convicts in the assassination of the former Prime Minister. It had decided to recommend their release under Article 161 of the Constitution, which relates to the power of the Governor to grant pardons and to suspend, remit and commute sentences in certain cases.
On Sunday Congress had opposed the move, and lashed out at both the Central and State governments on the issue while Mr. Stalin had hailed the Cabinet decision recommending the release of the seven convicts and urged Mr Purohit to take a decision “to bring joy to the people” of the state....