Chief Minister M.K. Stalin on Wednesday welcomed the release of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi assassination case life convict Perarivalan terming the Supreme Court’s verdict historic. He said the release of Perarivalan was not just a victory for an individual but had served as an example for federalism and the autonomy of States.
In a statement, Mr. Stalin said Perarivalan, who had spent 32 years in prison and lost his youth behind bars, was finally able to smell freedom. “I convey my wishes to him and welcome him,” said the Chief Minister.
Mr. Stalin also lauded the efforts of Perarivalan’s mother Arputhammal for waging a long battle for his release. She had proved the essence of motherhood and was an example of motherhood. “Time has proved that there is justice even for a single true tear. I convey my wishes to her,” he said.
The Chief Minister recalled the arguments put forth by the State government in the case pointing out it had established the rights of States. “It is giving joy that this was the final judgment as well and it has strongly established the rights of States,” Mr. Stalin said.
“It is extremely important that the judges have made it clear that the Governor cannot interfere in the policies of the State government. The judges have also said when the Governor does not take action, the courts will step in. They have also clarified that there is no necessity to ask the opinion of the Union government in this matter,” the Chief Minister said.
Through the judgment, it had become clear that the Governor cannot interfere in the policy decisions of the State government beyond his remit. “This is a victory for the whole of India, States’ autonomy and federalism, through the Tamil Nadu government,” he said.
Mr. Stalin said the [previous] Governor did not take any action on the resolution passed by the Tamil Nadu Assembly in 2018. At that time, the DMK which was in opposition, had kept insisting that the Governor must immediately give his approval. In 2020, he had met the Governor again seeking their release as per the Supreme Court’s decision and as per the resolution passed by the Assembly, he said.
The DMK had taken the same stance when in opposition and after coming to power — that the seven convicts must be released. He said the government had also earlier granted parole to Perarivalan considering his health.