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|January 28, 1998||
SIT built up a huge bank of material evidence against LTTE
Materials seized from hideouts, on the high seas and even the skies, formed part of the exhaustive 1,180 material objects produced by the prosecution to fortify its case before the designated court which conducted the Rajiv Gandhi assassination trial.
The reconstructed free-size churidar worn by the assassin Dhanu to conceal the belt bomb, an improvised bomb itself, remnants of batteries used to trigger the blast, were among the exhibits.
They also included a Japanese-made Chinon camera used by the dead photographer Haribabu to take the crucial 10 snaps, including the blast itself, and an artificial eye used by Sivarasan who masterminded the assassination.
Two letters in the name of Dhanu and stand-by assassin Subha addressed to LTTE intelligence chief Pottu Amman and women's wing leader Akila were recovered from a suitcase buried on the sands of the Kodiakarai coast on July 25, 1991.
Sivarasan's artificial eye was found at the home of Jayakumar, the tenth accused, at suburban Kodungaiyur in Madras.
Two other letters written by deceased accused 'Gundu' Shantan to LTTE chief Prabakaran on the success of the 'mission' were seized on the high seas off Rameswaram from Irumborai, the ninteenth accused, while he was proceeding to Jaffna on October 3, 1991.
Apart from these, the CBI's Special Investigation Team had also produced wireless coded messages sent to the LTTE high command on the "progress of the mission" which were subsequently decoded by an expert in the Intelligence Bureau.
Video-cassettes showing the dry-run conducted by the assassination squad at the public meeting addressed by former prime minister V P Singh in April, a month before Rajiv's assassination, and MDMK general secretary V Gopalsamy addressing students in Palayamkottai affirming that the LTTE chief was not satisfied with the Indo-Sri Lankan accord and describing Rajiv Gandhi as a "betrayer", are among other exihibits.
Video-cassettes of Dhanu leading the women cadres at a parade in Jaffna and Sivarasan participating in the second death anniversary of LTTE leader Dhileepan were also produced before the court.
Completing the tally of exhibits were the Maruti Gypsy and the tanker used for transporting Sivarasan, Subha and others from Madras to Bangalore when the SIT was in hot pursuit of them.
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