CHENNAI: Super mom Arputhammal’s heart-wrenching battle for justice for her son Perarivalan, languishing in the Vellore jail for the last 26 years for alleged involvement in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination, may be heading for fruition as a benevolent Edappadi K. Palaniswami government is said to be positively inclined.
The one-month parole granted by the Vellore prisons DIG to Perarivalan to attend on his ailing father ends on Sunday (September 24) and the 46-year-old lifer will have to return to his solitary cell unless the Chief Minister signs assent on his prayer seeking extension of parole by another month. His father, Gnanasekaran, 76, is still bedridden with severe neurological complications, pleaded Arivu, who was barely 19 when the SIT police arrested him for the Rajiv murder.
According to the MRI evaluation done on Gnanasekaran, who is confined to bed for most of the time and can only move around with help, he suffers from disc disease “causing severe neural foraminal stenosis with neural compromise”.
Ironically, the son cannot take the old man to a specialist or a competent medical institution because the parole conditions do not allow him to leave his house at Jolarpettai. Arivu sits at home, watching the father suffer in pain and listening to the concerned relatives and friends narrate the gradual decline in his health while his determined wife went around the country campaigning for the release of her innocent son from the Vellore prison. While a large police posse guards the house round-the-clock and records all visitors, Arivu is forbidden from giving any media interviews or photographs.
“The family is so happy seeing Perarivalan at home after 26 years. Many relatives and friends are visiting him to share their joy. We wish this happiness will continue”, said Arputhammal.
She has been pleading with her son to agree to get married but Arivu rejected the suggestion outright. “He said he does not want to ruin a woman’s life. He will marry only after release from jail. I am old and tired. His father is bedridden. How long can the family wait?” It’s difficult to turn away from the moisture in her tired eyes.
The SIT charged him with supplying the nine-volt battery that was used by the LTTE suicide bomber Dhanu. Though Arivu pleaded that he did not know why Sivarasan, the one-eyed chief of the Tiger hit squad, sought that battery from him, the SIT insisted that the youth was very much part of the murder plot—anyone following the LTTE operations would know the elementary truth that Velupillai Prabhakaran and his intelligence chief Pottu Amman shared operational information with the field operatives only on the need-to-know basis and so, it would be hard to believe that the Chennai youth was so close to the inner circle of the assassination squad and his involvement so vital (just supplying a battery) that the Tiger top brass shared details of the operation for which the battery was needed.