HC orders notice to TN govt on Nalini's general amnesty appeal

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Chennai, Oct 24 (UNI) The first Bench of Madras High Court today ordered issue of notice to the Tamil Nadu government on an appeal filed by Nalini, the life convict in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case, seeking general amnesty normally given to life convicts, who had served ten years of imprisonment.

The Bench comprising Chief Justice A K Ganguly and Mr Justice P Jothimani ordered notice, returnable by three weeks, to Home Secretary, Additional Director General of Police (ADGP) and Superintendent of police, Vellore prison, where Nalini was lodged.

Nalini filed the present appeal against an order of Justice S Nagamuthu, who had dismissed her writ petition filed in 2006, seeking general amnesty on the lines of general pardon given to 465 prisoners, who had completed ten years of imprisonment.

The Judge had turned down her plea, stating that she was not entitled for premature release as her offence was investigated by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).

''The learned Judge has erred in not appreciating that the nature of investigating agency could not have determined the eligibility of a life convict for consideration of premature release from the prison'', she said in the present appeal.

Referring to the stand taken by the state governent, opposing her premature release, Nalini submitted that the single Judge had erred in not appreciating that when an act of the state was prima facie unreasonable and when an element of discrimination appears in such an act and when such a challenge was raised, the judge should have called upon the state government to satisfy the court.

She prayed that the single judge's order be set aside and she be granted general amnesty.

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