HC refuses to release Nalini


The Madras High Court today refused to direct the State government to release Rajiv Gandhi assassination case life convicts S Nalini and Ravichandran without waiting for the assent of the Governor.

After hearing a plea filed by Nalini and RP Ravichandran seeking premature release, the bench of Chief Justice Munishwar Nath Bhandari and Justice N Mala observed that the High Court did not have special powers that the Supreme Court has under Article 142 of the Constitution. Thus, it cannot order their release, like the Supreme Court did for Perarivalan, another convict in the assassination case. Hence the petition was dismissed as not maintainable.

The court had previously observed that Article 161 does not provide for binding the decision of the Council of Ministers. The bench further stated that the Ministers have not been given any power.