Justice Milap Chand Jain ceremonially presented his 17-volume interim report on Rajiv Gandhi’s assassination to Home Minister Indrajit Gupta on August 28. The commission had been asked to look into the circumstances of and the conspiracy leading to Rajiv’s murder
The commission has quoted two reports of the Intelligence Bureau (IB) that speak of Karunanidhi not being averse to the elimination of EPRLF leaders by LTTE hit squads. These reports, filed on June 28, 1990 (nine days after Padmanabha’s murder) referred to “the chief minister informing Natesan (an LTTE activist) to provide advance information regarding LTTE movements and also sought details of locations of LTTE hideouts to direct the police to keep away from such places”. The IB also recorded the “opinion expressed by the chief minister regarding Padmanabha being a betrayer”. Another report quoted by Jain claims the “chief minister also told Natesan that killing of Padmanabha was a necessity and so also of Vardaraja Perumal and that Natesan should ensure that he (Karunanidhi) was taken into confidence before such acts are committed”. The commission has also recorded the evidence of former state home secretary R. Nagarajan, which further indicts Karunanidhi: “Nagarajan has deposed that the DGP informed him that the chief minister has asked him (DGP) that the police need not evince keen interest to trace out the culprits in the Padmanabha massacre till his arrival the next day for further instructions from him.” To drive home the point, the commission has quoted extensively from Chidambaram’s speech to the Lok Sabha on February 25, 1991, in which he claimed that the movement of senior eprlf leaders “was conveyed by the state police to the LTTE”. Padmanabha’s killing is important because it was the same hit squad that was later deployed to eliminate Rajiv.
If that isn’t enough to damage Karunanidhi, the commission has quoted other documents and various statements given to it by former LTTE activists. For example, Kasi Anandan, a senior member of the 10-member central committee of the LTTE’s political wing, admitted in his deposition on September 11, 1996, that “the LTTE had very friendly relations with Karunanidhi. In the days of Karunanidhi as CM, movement of LTTE was more free. Local administration was also friendly in Tamil Nadu”. Anandan even disclosed that the “LTTE was able to communicate from Jaffna to Tamil Nadu when the V.P. Singh government was at the Centre and the Karunanidhi government in Tamil Nadu.”
Jain has recorded vivid details of the LTTE’s free access to Karunanidhi and key state government officials. Anandan revealed that he, along with another LTTE leaders, used to meet Karunanidhi in strict privacy: “I have met Karunanidhi several times alone and once or twice with Natesan.” Neither the Tamil Nadu government nor the Centre had any clue as to what transpired in these meetings.
Indeed, the Jain Commission report has raised doubts over the DMK’s committment to the centrally sponsored action plan for handling the LTTE. It has alleged that even coded messages between the Centre and the state government were promptly relayed to the LTTE leaders in Jaffna. “There is evidence to show that, during this period, some of the most vital wireless messages were passed between the LTTE operatives based in Tamil Nadu and Jaffna. These messages, which were decoded later, are directly related to the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi.”
To substantiate this point, Jain has quoted from a speech by the then Prime Minister Chandra Shekhar in the Lok Sabha on January 10, 1991. He had said: “Certain information that were just given to the chief minister (Karunanidhi) has gone to the LTTE headquarters not only in Tamil Nadu but even in Jaffna. This is something very serious.”
Deposing before the commission on January 17 this year, Karunanidhi asserted: “I had supported the LTTE along with other parties, but after the murder of Padmanabha, I withdrew my support.” Jain is, however, disinclined to accept this denial: “It cannot be found that after June 19, 1990, the DMK government in Tamil Nadu gave no support to the LTTE.”
Despite 12 extensions and the ridicule Jain suffered, Jain’s findings may prove as devastating as the bomb that went off in Sriperumbudur six years ago. But the judge is unfazed by the implications of his findings. “I have done my job to the best of my ability,” he says,” even under adverse circumstances and non-cooperation. Now, it is for the Government to do whatever it wants to do.”
In Sriperumbudur Bomb explosion, Not only Rajiv Gandhi, there are fifteen other Policemen and Congress functionaries, who lost their lives along with Rajiv Gandhi in May21, 1991 at Sriperumbudur. Their families are still shedding tears and remembering the searching of the bodies of their beloved father, son and other friends in the midnight at Sriperumbudur ground and the Hospital’s. It is not known, who is going to wipe their tears?
Now, Nalini an accused in the Rajiv case, cites good conduct, and now files plea for early release. Nalini may be having good conduct. Good conduct alone will not serve any purpose. Without fear or favour, she must talk about the truth, that who are all behind the Rajiv assassination plot. Then only her plea for release will be justified. Even if she was released, Confession will only give her mental peace.