Nalini serving her life sentence in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case now moved to Supreme Court seeking her premature release. Nalini has challenged the June 17 order of the Madras High Court, which rejected her plea for early release. Previously Nalini cited the apex court judgment ordering the release of co-convict AG Perarivalan while seeking to be set free.
Madras High Court had on June 17 rejected the petitions of Nalini Sriharan and Ravichandran, both convicted in the former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi assassination case, to order their release without even the consent of the state’s Governor.
On 18th May 2022, by invoking Article 142 of the Constitution, the Apex Court released Perarivalan, who had served over 30 years in prison.
The Supreme Court was of opined that the inordinate delay in deciding his early release plea by the Governor under Article 161 warranted his release.
Stating that the special power under Article 142 is exclusively conferred upon the Apex Court, the High Court suggested if Nalini was seeking release in terms of the order in the Perarivalan Case, she could move to the Apex Court. Nalini has made reference to the ruling of the highest court in the country, which found in favor of AG Perarivalan’s release from prison. Nalini had already petitioned the Madras High Court for a similar remedy, but the High Court had declined to hear her case.
The Madras High Court, while turning down the petition, had stated that it did not have special powers that the Supreme Court has under Article 142 of the Constitution and hence, it cannot order their release, as the Supreme Court did for Perarivalan in May 2022.