New Delhi, Dec 2: The Tamil Nadu government has no power to remit the sentences of the seven accused in the Rajiv Gandhi case, the Supreme Court has held.
The Supreme Court which had reserved its verdict on Wednesday held that the Tamil Nadu government had no right to remit the sentences of the convicts in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case.
The Supreme Court also held that in case a decision is taken to release a convict from jail, then the respective state governments would need to consult with the union government before doing so.
The judgment also settles the position of the law which questioned the rights or powers of a state government to remit sentences, especially of prisoners condemned to death whose sentences have been commuted to life. A Constitution Bench headed by the Chief Justice of India H L Dattu delivered the verdict today.
During the course of the arguments various points of law relating to the rights of the states in reducing the sentences of a convict, especially those on the death row came up for argument.
The matter came up before the Supreme Court after the union government had said that it would not allow the Tamil Nadu government to alter the verdict of the Supreme Court.
The state of Tamil Nadu sought to use its power of remission to release seven convicts whose death penalty was commuted to life sentence.
The Tamil Nadu government had taken a decision to release three convicts Murugan, Santhan and Arivu after their death sentences had been commuted to life by the Supreme Court. The centre however objected to this following which the matter came up before the Supreme Court.
Apart from the three convicts mentioned above the Tamil Nadu government had also decided to release Nalini, Robert Pius, Jayakumar, and Ravichandran whose death sentences too had been commuted to life.