Rajiv Gandhi assassination convict AG Perarivalan has been granted a week's parole for a medical check-up by the Supreme Court, which today directed the Tamil Nadu government to provide police protection to him during his hospital visits.
With this, parole granted by the Madras High Court to Perarivalan till November 23 has been extended by a week.
The Supreme Court order followed the Central Bureau of Investigation's submission that it had nothing to do with the release of the convict as the Tamil Nadu Governor, Banwarilal Purohit, had to take a call.
The Tamil Nadu government's recommendation to release all seven convicts in the 1991 assassination case, including Mr Perarivalan, is pending with Governor Purohit.
In January, the Supreme Court will decide on Mr Perarivalan's plea seeking release and may even ask the Governor to decide on the state government's recommendation.
Earlier this month, key Tamil opposition parties, the DMK and PMK, had urged Mr Purohit to quickly decide on the release of the seven Rajiv Gandhi assassination case convicts. The parties' appeal followed the Supreme Court expressing its unhappiness over the more than two-year delay by Mr Purohit in deciding on Mr Perarivalan's plea.
The Governor's decision has been pending since September 9, 2018, when the state cabinet resolution recommended the release of the seven convicts.
Perarivalan, 46, has sought a suspension of his life sentence in the case till the CBI-led Multi Disciplinary Monitoring Agency probe is completed.
The seven convicts, in jail for the past 29 years, were originally given death sentence for their role in the assassination of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi in 1991 at Sriperumbudur by an LTTE suicide bomber.