Rajiv Gandhi assassination case convicts allowed to make video calls to SL, UK
Posted on June 17th, 2021

Courtesy The Daily Mirror

The Madras High Court, on Thursday, allowed Nalini Sriharan and her husband Murugan, convicts in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case, to make video calls to Sri Lanka and London.

Nalini’s mother Padma had filed a petition before the Madras High Court, seeking permission to allow Nalini and Murugan to speak to their relatives living in Sri Lanka and London. Padma had sought permission for her daughter and her husband Sriharan alias Murugan to make video calls to her mother-in-law in Sri Lanka and sister-in-law in London for at least 10 minutes daily. The plea also said Murugan’s father died on April 27 and he was not permitted to join the final rites through a video call.

The Union government had objected saying allowing Nalini and Murugan to speak with their relatives living abroad would affect the investigation of the Multi Disciplinary Monitoring Agency (MDMA) probing the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case. The submission made by a senior police official said since the offence committed by life convicts had international ramification and given their overseas contacts with banned outfits, there was no guarantee that convicts would use this facility for personal, family affair only.

The petition was filed in the court as the life convicts or prisoners are not allowed to talk to people living abroad over phone as per the government order issued in 2011. Prisoners are allowed to make calls not exceeding 30 minutes per month, once in 10 days, to their relatives living within the country. The calls can be made only thrice in a month and 30 minutes is the time limit. However, it is not the fundamental right of the prisoners, argued the Tamil Nadu Prisons Department.

Earlier, the judges, who heard arguments from both sides, had adjourned the verdict without specifying a date.

On Thursday, the bench comprising of Justices N. Kirubakaran and V.M. Velumani passed the order allowing Nalini and Murugan to speak with relatives living abroad via WhatsApp video call.

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