Co-conspirator in Rajiv Gandhi’s assassination released on parole


India’s longest-serving female prisoner, who was convicted over the assassination of former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi, walked out of prison Thursday on a 30-day parole to arrange her daughter’s marriage.

Nalini Sriharan was granted parole earlier this month by the Madras High Court after spending nearly three decades in jail over her role in Gandhi’s murder by a female suicide bomber in 1991.

Sriharan, an Indian national, was arrested soon after the bombing and found guilty — together with her husband and 25 others — of conspiracy and helping the teenage bomber Thenmozhi Rajaratnam.

Her death sentence was commuted on a clemency plea by Gandhi’s widow in 2000. Three others are still awaiting execution.

Sriharan was pregnant when she was arrested, and gave birth to the child in prison. Her daughter is a UK national and a doctor.

She was released from Vellore Central Prison and will spend time at her home in the town, but has been barred by the court from speaking to the media or politicians.

She had previously been granted short paroles to attend her father’s cremation and memorial.