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Nalini’s plea for release: HC notice to TN Govt

The Madras high court on Tuesday issued notice to the Tamil Nadu government on a petition filed by Rajiv Gandhi assassination case convict Nalini Sriharan, undergoing life imprisonment, seeking her premature release.

Justice MM Sundresh, before whom the petition came up for hearing, ordered the issue of notice to the state Home Department and the Prison authorities and posted the matter for further hearing after Christmas holidays.

Nalini  sought a direction to the state government to consider her October 22, 2014, representation for pre-mature release as she had already undergone imprisonment for over 24 years.

She was first awarded death sentence by the trial court in 1998, which was confirmed by the Supreme Court. Subsequently, the Tamil Nadu government under Article 161 of the Constitution commuted it to life imprisonment on April 24, 2000.

She said the state government had in the past released 2,200 life convicts who had served 10 years of sentence, but did not consider her plea on the ground that her case fell under a different section of the Code of Criminal Procedure.

Nalini claimed that she was also eligible to be considered for release under a state government scheme wherein life convicts who had completed 20 years of imprisonment were granted premature release.
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