Nalini Sriharan – Priyanka Gandhi Vadra An Angel: Rajiv Gandhi Case Convicted for NDTV

Nalini Sriharan – Priyanka Gandhi Vadra An Angel: Rajiv Gandhi Case Convicted for NDTV

Nalini Sriharan’s release was approved by the Supreme Court this week.


Nalini Sriharan, one of six convicts in the assassination of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi who were released a day ago by Supreme Court order, said Sunday she had played no role in the plot and was because of her acquaintance with her husband’s friends been arrested.

When asked if she regretted her role in the murder and that of others in the bombing, she protested her innocence.

“Actually, I have no role at all. I know I’m doomed. But for my heart and conscience… it knows what happened,” Ms. Sriharan said in an interview with NDTV.

She said she was not involved in the plot to assassinate the prime minister but was charged because she was part of the group that planned it.

“They were my husband’s friends. So I met her. I’m a very reserved person. I don’t talk to them I used to go with them. That’s it. Other than that, I don’t have personal contact, or I don’t know their family where they belong,” she said.

Before her death sentence was commuted in 2001, Ms Sriharan said she expected to be executed at any time and prepared to be hanged seven times.

“Seven times they issued a black warrant (death warrant), they waited for me,” she said.

But she fondly recalled meeting Rajiv Gandhi’s daughter Priyanka Gandhi Vadra in prison.

“She is a very friendly person. she was an angel And she made me respect myself because… we weren’t treated right in prison,” Ms. Sriharan said.

“We weren’t even allowed to sit in front of officials. We had to stand and talk. But when she came to meet me, she forced me to sit next to her. It was a very different experience for me,” she said.

Ms Sriharan said Ms Gandhi Vadra questioned her about her father’s assassination when they met. She got emotional and cried too.

“She asked me about her father’s murder. She got emotional for her father. She cried too,” she said at a news conference.

Ms Sriharan also told NDTV about reconnecting with her daughter Harithra, a doctor in London who was born to her in prison in 1992 and then raised outside. In 2019, when she was married, Ms. Srihararan was granted a month’s probation to attend.

“She totally forgot about me. I was the one who gave birth to her, but I got separated from her after two years. After dropping them outside she totally forgot who I am. Now we’re trying to reclaim what’s happening,” she said.

“It’s a very difficult situation for me and her. we are mature We can understand things, but she is very young. She couldn’t understand what was happening. That’s why she suffers so much. So, it’s very difficult for me daughter,” she added.

Ms Sriharan was sentenced to death for her role in the 1991 assassination of Rajiv Gandhi by a Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) suicide bomber during a campaign rally in Sriperumbudur, Tamil Nadu.

The sentence was reduced to life after intervention by Rajiv Gandhi’s wife Sonia Gandhi. Years later, the Supreme Court commuted the sentences of six other convicts in the case.

The decision was welcomed by many in Tamil Nadu, where her detention was an emotional issue as many believe the seven convicted locals were part of the plot, unaware of the extent.

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