Nalini, jailed for Rajiv killing, pleads for mercy

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{image-nalini murugan_10062008.jpg www.oneindia.com}Chennai, June 10: Nalini, serving a life term in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case in the Vellore Central Jail, is pinning her hopes on an early release as Chennai High Court will hear writ petition filed by her on Tuesday.

The petition, filed in April after her plea for early release was turned down by an advisory board last year, is likely to come up for hearing before Justice A Kulasekaran. The Tamil Nadu government had accepted the board's decision. In her petition, Nalini said that she had served 17 years in jail and could be freed based on her good behaviour. Nalini also stated that she had to take care of her teenaged daughter. Her husband, Sriharan alias Murugan, was awarded death sentence in the same case. Both of them are serving terms in the Vellore Central Prison. The Tamil Nadu government is also expected to reveal its stance on Nalini before the Madras HC today. The court had earlier asked the state government to clear its position by Tuesday.

Nalini grabbed news headlines recently after Priyanka Vadra, daughter of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi, met her in Vellore prison. According to reports, Priyanka enquired why she had got involved in her father's assassination.

Nalini had initially received death sentence along with her husband Murugan and two others in the case. Her capital punishment was later commuted to life imprisonment following an appeal on humanitarian grounds by Congress president and Rajiv"s widow Sonia Gandhi, after Nalini gave birth to a baby girl in the Vellore prison.

Janata Party president Subramanian Swamy yesterday said he would appeal in the Madras HC against Nalini"s plea seeking early release.

Swamy cited a Supreme Court judgment in the case and said Nalini did not deserve any mercy despite being a woman.

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