This may happen in case the source file is corrupt or not downloaded completely. This is an MSI issue. If you are running any anti-virus/firewall software, it is recommended to disable the same during JRE download/install.
Try Windows offline download/install option from:
I would like to thank the contributors to this forum. You pointed me in the direction of resolving this difficult problem. The links showed me that it was norton anti-virus 360 which was conflicting with the java jdk and preventing it from being installed. I had to completely remove norton anti-virus and also completely remove java jre. I then had to re-install java jre, and then install java jdk. This proved succcessful. After that I then re-installed norton anti-virus.
It was a lot of hassle but i now have everything working fine. We should contact Sun and inform them about this conflict between Java jdk and norton anti-virus.