||This article possibly contains original research. (October 2007)|
Thenmozhi "Gayatri" Rajaratnam Aka Dhanu (Tamil: தேன்மொழி "காயத்திரி" ராசரத்தினம்; died 21 May 1991) was the assassin who killed Rajiv Gandhi, herself, and 14 others in a suicide bombing on 21 May 1991, in the Indian town of Sriperumbudur in Tamil Nadu, near Chennai (see also assassination of Rajiv Gandhi). Thought to have been a member of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (Tamil Tigers), Rajaratnam was also known as Gayatri and Dhanu. Her birth year has not been conclusively established but research shows that she was still a minor at the time.
There are many accusations attributed to the IPKF period where an estimated 16,000 lives were lost, including 2,500 Indian soldiers. It is believed that Dhanu and Sivarasan - the key conspirator of the splinter group were among the militants trained by RAW.
Rajiv Gandhi was campaigning in Sriperumbudur for the upcoming parliamentary elections. The last time Rajiv had been in power, his government was instrumental in sending a peace keeping force into Sri Lanka to help enforce a peace accord, which earned the ire of various Tamil militant groups. The troops he had sent in 1987 had fought the Tamil separatist guerrillas.. It was claimed that Indian Peacekeeping Force troops killed her brothers and raped her.
Seven years later in 1998, an Indian court convicted 26 people in the conspiracy to assassinate Rajiv. Upon appeal, the death sentence of only four of the twenty-six people was upheld.
- Interim Report of the Jain Commission of Inquiry into the Assassination of Shri Rajiv Gandhi
- From left to right : Kokila Vani (Youth Congress Worker), Thenmozhi Rajaratnam (Aka Dhanu, the assassin, disguised with spectacles), Latha Kanan (A Congress volunteer), Sivarasan (The mastermind behind the attack, posed as journalist)
- Rajiv Gandhi garlanding crowd before explosion or assassination:
- The assassin's severed head after explosion:
- "IPKF was accused of rape, murder and plunder". thesundayleader.lk. 2008. Retrieved 2008-02-10.
- "Killing Rajiv Gandhi: Dhanu's sacrificial metamorphosis in death". tandfonline.com. 2009. Retrieved 2011-07-25.
- "Files". Brain ideal. August 2008. Retrieved 2013-01-19.