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Lankan convict in Gandhi assassination case passes away

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Santhan alias T Suthendiraraja, a Sri Lankan national who was one of the six convicts released in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case, died on Wednesday morning at the Rajiv Gandhi Government Hospital (RGGH) in Chennai.

Santhan, who was released by the Indian Supreme Court in November 2022, was kept at the special camp near the Tiruchirapalli Central Prison.

Last week, the Foreigners Regional Registration Office (FRRO) in Chennai issued an order to deport Santhan to Sri Lanka, however, he was admitted to the RGGH for treatment for a kidney-related ailment.

Addressing the reports, E Thenirajan, Dean, RGGH, said that based on the directions of the Tiruchirapalli district collector, Santhan was admitted to the hospital on January 27.

Thenirajan said a team of doctors were treating him at the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) and constantly monitoring him. He said Santhan was diagnosed with cryptogenic cirrhosis or a liver disease.

“He suffered a setback to his health yesterday (Tuesday) night. He had lost consciousness and we were providing treatment. Around 4.30 am today (Wednesday), he suffered a cardiac arrest. He was revived following a CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) procedure and was on ventilator support. However, he failed to respond to further treatment and passed away at 7.50 am,” he said.

Thenirajan said they would carry out the post-mortem procedures now and take further measures to send his body to Sri Lanka.

According to court documents, Santhan is believed to have fled then strife-torn Sri Lanka in 1991 and reached India by boat, along with Sivarasan, who led the assassination team and was never caught alive, and a few others. According to the Supreme Court order, Santhan’s role in the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi was direct and active.

Santhan was initially sentenced to death for his involvement in the assassination of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi in 1991, however, his sentence was commuted to life imprisonment. He was released in November 2022, along with five other convicts, after spending over three decades in prison.

(The Indian Express)

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Iran – SL sign 5 MoUs (Video)

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Iran and Sri Lanka signed five memorandums of understanding (MoUs), aimed at bolstering bilateral relations between the two countries.

The MoUs signed will cover cooperation in film, media, tourism, cooperatives, libraries, and cultural, scientific, technical, and sports fields between the two countries, the Presidential Media Division notes.

Earlier in the evening, the Iranian President – Dr. Ebrahim Raisi and his Sri Lankan counterpart President Wickremesinghe held one-on-one discussions, followed by a bilateral meeting between representatives of both nations at the Presidential Secretariat.

(Video – PMD)

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Imported milk powder prices slashed

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The price of imported milk powder will be reduced with effect from tomorrow (April 25), the Milk Powder Importers’ Association states.

Accordingly, the price of a 01 kg pack will drop by Rs. 250 – Rs. 300 while the price of 400g pack will be slashed by Rs. 100ත් – Rs. 130.

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Injunction against Wijedasa and Sarathie

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The Colombo District Court today (April 24) issued an injunction order preventing the appointment of Minister Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe as the Acting Chairman of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP).
The court has also issued an injunction order preventing MP Sarathie Dushmantha Mithrapala from functioning as the General Secretary of SLFP.

Colombo District Judge Sandun Withana issued these orders after considering a complaint filed against the respective appointments.

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