Milap Chand Jain handed over his report on Rajiv Gandhi’s Assassination to the Indian Home Minister Indrajit Gupta. It consisted of 17 volumes eight of which were the report and the nine of annexes. It was an explosive report and no one was willing to handle it. Jain said about his report , “ I am fully satisfied with my interim report and what it contains. Each one of my conclusions and observations is based on documents on record with the commission.
|Rajiv Gandhi just before he was assassinated|
The report had singled out Karunanidhi’s DMK for its severest indictment. It holds Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M.Karunanidhi and his DMK responsible for abetting Rajiv Gandhi’s murder. He further pointed out DMK as an ally of the LTTE, whose cadre killed Rajiv Gandhi.
Jain has further asserted that the Congress Government at the Centre and M.G.Ramachandran’s AIADMK State Government were responsible for the initial impetus to Tamil Militancy. But Jain holds the DMK of Karunanidhi guilty of encouraging and assisting the LTTE even after the Indo-Sri Lankan accord of 1987. Jain report continues:
“Under the changed scenario, the LTTE made a strategic shift in their political alignments,” says the report. “They sent personal emissaries to Karunanidhi seeking his active support in their battle against the Indian Peace Keeping Force (IPKF).
These overtures of the LTTE towards the DMK started a chain of events which led to LTTE’s survival and growth in Tamil Nadu even after the attitude of the Government of India had changed towards the LTTE after the hostilities between the IPKF and LTTE in Sri Lanka.’’
The Jain report states that the LTTE “was getting its supplies, including arms, ammunition, explosives, fuel and other essential items for its war against the IPKF from Tamil Nadu. That too with the support of the Tamil Nadu government and the connivance of the law enforcement authorities”.
The report emphasises the political antagonism between the DMK government in the state and the Rajiv Gandhi government at the Centre. Karunanidhi took over as chief minister in January 1989 after his party's decisive victory over the Congress and the AIADMK.
Karunanidhi assisted in the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi . He was closely connection with Sri Lanka terrorists.
According to the report, 1989 signified "the perpetuation of the general political trend of indulging the Tamil militants on Indian soil and tolerance of their wide-ranging criminal and anti-national activities ... LTTE activities of arms smuggling, abduction of Indian citizens and officials and intimidation of the law enforcement machinery were tolerated". Citing the brutal murder of EPRLF leader K. Padmanabha, along with 15 others in Madras on June 19, 1990, Jain has resurrected memories of "the impunity with which the LTTE could operate in India".
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 Intelligence Burea also recorded the "opinion expressed by the chief minister regarding Padmanabha being a betrayer". Another report quoted by Jain claims the "chief minister (Karunanidhi) 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".
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.
The entire state (TamilNadu) machinery was, in one way or the other, involved in supporting the LTTE at that time. Evidently, the police was not given a free hand to deal with the LTTE.
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.''
Various intelligence reports in July 1990, recorded by Jain, also suggested that LTTE functionary Kiruban had approached Gopalaswamy and the Chief Minister(Karunanidhi) of Tamil Nadu for providing more landing points to bring in injured Tigers from across the Palk Straits. As Jain records, "The chief minister (Karunanidhi) reportedly suggested a point from Mallipattinam, preferably in the coastal areas of Thondi, as the possible choice for the purpose. Thus, it appears, changes in landing points along the coast were always effected in consultation with DMK leaders."
The commission has also referred to some reports that indicated Karunanidhi was personally instrumental in ensuring things went smoothly for the LTTE. At one stage, when the Tigers were hit by a paucity of funds, Karunanidhi is reported to have suggested floating an organisation called "The Relief Association for Sri Lankan Tamils" to facilitate the diversion of Government funds. LTTE activists Anandan and Natesan were mooted as office-bearers.
Karunanidhi's reckless style alarmed even his political allies. Mufti Mohammed Sayeed, home minister in V.P. Singh's regime, cautioned Karunanidhi about the worsening situation in the state. Giving details of the LTTE's growing presence in Tamil Nadu, Mufti reprimanded the chief minister (Karunanidhi) for the DMK's perceived closeness to the LTTE.
The evidence against the Karunanidhi Government appears to be quite damning, particularly since the commission has been rather dismissive of the DMK's protestations of innocence. 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."
In fact, Jain has praised MGR, who once paid Rs 5 crore to the LTTE, for dealing with V.Prabhakaran, the LTTE supremo, decisively. The report says: "An affirmation of the policy of the government of India is seen in a severe reprimand to V. Prabhakaran by MGR, the then chief minister of Tamil Nadu, after the SAARC meeting when Prabhakaran was told by him that he should carry out his struggle from his own country if he was not willing to play by our rules."
According to a senior Congress functionary, "It will be totally unethical to support the DMK's participation in the Government if the interim report holds it responsible for causing our leader's death."
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."