Rajiv convicts: DMK govt highlights its role in release, takes jibe at governor’s

His two-page statement, mentioning the legal battle by the DMK government for Rajiv case convicts, said those who upheld “humanity and human rights” were also responsible for the victory.

“The Supreme Court’s decision demonstrates that governors who are appointed to the position cannot interfere with decisions made by democratically elected governments. This judgment is a historic foreword to democratic principles,” the statement said.

The main opposition party in Tamil Nadu, the AIADMK, too welcomed the Supreme Court order, though without a formal statement.

Thol Thirumavalavan, the chief of DMK ally VCK, said the verdict is comforting, even though it was delivered late. He said the credit goes to the “long legal struggle” fought by many. “By approving the (Tamil Nadu) Cabinet resolution, the Governor could have freed the (convicts) on his own. I believe the matter was handled carelessly so that the Supreme Court, rather than the Governor or the Union government, would make the final decision,” he said.

Vaiko, a Tamil nationalist leader and the general secretary of the MDMK, also hailed the verdict and termed it as a fitting reply to the “confrontational attitude” of governors. “These people (the convicts) lived in darkness for 30 years. Will they be able to get those years back? The fact that they will now be released from prison alone makes the verdict comforting,” he said.

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