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|May 11, 1999||
Sivarasan too would have met with the same fate
If Sivarasan, the One-eyed Jack who masterminded the assassination of former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi was alive today, he would probably meet the same fate as that of four other accused who were sentenced to death by the Supreme Court today.
Hounded by the Special Investigation Team of the CBI, Sivarasan committed suicide along with six other Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam militants in Bangalore in August 1991, making the investigation more complicated.
Sivarasan, who managed to flee from the assassination spot at Sriperumbudur, near Madras, and arrive in Garden City along with stand-by assassin Subha and five others, had holed up in a remote house at Konanakunte, on the city outskirts.
An SIT team and the national security guards, along with the city police, surrounded their hideout and lay in wait for two days to capture them alive. Finally, after a shoot-out, Sivarasan ended his life by putting a pistol to his head, while the six others, swallowed cyanide pill.
Sivarasan and his colleagues took refuge in Karnataka after the SIT launched one of the biggest ever manhunt in post-independent- India in the wake of the assassination. As the heat was on, they went from place to place. When they found that the SIT was closing in on them, 12 of the hardcore militants committed suicide in the forests near Mandya.
The SIT had wanted One-eyed Jack alive badly to unravel the assassination plot, the Indian connections and any international hand that might have had a role in the ghastly crime.
It was a tip-off from a milk maid that led the SIT team to Sivarasan's hide-out, though the police were keeping a watch on a couple of houses in the locality. She saw two young men driving off in an autorickshaw in the morning on that fateful day and alerted the police, who chased the vehicle for about a km. While one of them died swallowing a cyanide pill, the other was caught without any injury.
The SIT officials and the local police surrounded the house and kept a constant vigil even as the LTTE men started firing at the raiding party from inside the house, injuring four policemen besides a CBI official. A crack team of the NSG which landed from New Delhi to assist the SIT and the city police, used powerful detonators to break open the door on the terrace and force their entry into the house. But they found the militants dead.
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