Rajiv case query after ex-sleuth's disclosure

Rajiv Gandhi

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Tuesday sought the responses of the CBI and the Centre on a plea by a life convict in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination to suspend his sentence as the investigating officer had testified that the agency ignored a vital part of his confession.

A.G. Perarivalan has claimed that though he had supplied to mastermind Sivarasan two batteries used in the "belt bomb" that killed Rajiv in 1991, he was not aware of the conspiracy. This was known to V. Thiagarajan, the CBI officer who has since retired, but the agency chose to ignore it, Perarivalan said and cited a supporting affidavit by the ex-sleuth in the court last month.

Thiagarajan has claimed he filed the affidavit "in good conscience" as Perarivalan has been languishing in jail for 26 years. The bench of Justices Ranjan Gogoi and Naveen Sinha sought the responses of the Centre and the CBI within two weeks.

"....Perarivalan, while making the confessional statement before me, did expressly state he had absolutely no idea as to what purpose they (the batteries) were going to be used...." Thiagarajan said.

"As the investigation was still in progress, we were not sure about the statement and the same was omitted... but as the investigation progressed, there was confirmation about the ignorance of the accused relating to the conspiracy," the affidavit states.


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