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Bombay HC warns state against overcrowding of prisons, pushes for model jails like developed nations

  • The Bombay High Court recently asked the Maharashtra government questions regarding the condition of prisons and what is to be done in order to set up a model prison in the state on the lines of those in developed countries.

    The court observed that in view of the increasing number of undertrials, a study would have to be conducted on the present condition of jails in the state.The government will have to conduct an exercise and ascertain the requirements of a model and modern jail on the lines of jails in developed countries.

    The bench was hearing a petition filed by undertrial Shaikh Ibrahim Abdul, who is lodged at Yerwada jail. The petition highlights poor conditions of jails across the state.Earlier, on directions of the court, a principal district and sessions judge of Pune submitted a report to division bench of Justice VM Kanade and Shalini Phansalkar Joshi.The report stated that in spite of having a sanctioned strength of Yerwada at 2,323 prisoners, there were about 3,792 prisoners in the main jail. Out of which undertrial prisoners are 2,887 as on 8th October, 2015...


    In an order dated October 15, 2015, the court had observed that there is obvious overcrowding of prisoners and it is a matter of serious security concern. The number of prisoners who are kept are almost double than sanctioned capacity.The court further observed that In the past, the concept of high risk prisoners was not there. But now several such prisoners are lodged at the Arthur Road jail. Similarly, it needs to be seen what the future requirements will be.
     

    OUR TAKE

    The issue of overcrowded prisons is something which our country is facing since time immemorial. Most of the prisons even lack the basic ammenties which is a clear violation of right to life and human dignity of the inmates. Many of the inmates have been living in prisons for periods longer than there actual sentences. Model Prisons are the need of the hour. The government needs to come up with an effective action plan for setting up of Model Prisons in the country.


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