Honey trap

Rajiv Convicts will Not be Released: TN Govt Tells HC

Chennai: The Tamil Nadu Government today informed the Madras High Court that it has no intention of releasing Robert Payas and Jayakumar, life convicts in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case.

When the petition filed by the two convicts seeking their premature release from prison came up for hearing, the State government, in its affidavit, submitted that it will not intervene and pardon the convicts as per a decision taken in 2012.

They had first filed a petition in 2012 requesting the government to release them, arguing that they had completed 20 years of servitude in jail and citing examples of several lifetime convicts, who had been released after serving 14 years.

Robert Payas had in a letter to Chief Minister Edapadi K. Palaniswami, said he should be euthanised on the grounds of mercy if they did not release him and his body must be handed over to his family.

Payas wrote that the long years that he served in jail without the hope of release have become depressing. But the Central Government said it would not under any circumstances release the convicts.

It had also insisted that the court should suspend the mercy killing petition filed by Payas. The Centre, in its affidavit said, “A life sentence means life time of servitude in jail. The convict could not claim freedom and will not be released on the grounds of completing 14 years in jail.”