HC raps prison officials on inmates’ complaints
The Bombay High Court, on Tuesday, pulled up prison and police authorities for failing to produce undertrial prisoners in courts and for lack of basic facilities in prisons across the state, reports HT Correspondent.mumbai Updated: Feb 10, 2010 01:22 IST
The Bombay High Court, on Tuesday, pulled up prison and police authorities for failing to produce undertrial prisoners in courts and for lack of basic facilities in prisons across the state.
“How is it that for protection of VIPs there are enough police personnel available but not for escorting undertrial prisoners?” asked Justice SC Dharmadhikari, while hearing a bunch of applications filed by prisoners from various jails.
The judge was shocked to find that a Thane jail inmate - Piruram Bhagat facing trial under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act - wasn’t taken to court 37 times, and no witness was examined in his case after December 2008. The judge has sought all the records pertaining to his case.
The judge added that the prisoners were not being provided food proper for human consumption.
The judge also rapped the prison authorities for delay in forwarding complaints of prisoners to the high court. One complaint before the court on Tuesday was written in June 2009 but it reached the high court only a few days before.
In their letters to the court, prisoners have complained about ill-treatment and poor quality of food and have sought a speedy trial. Acting on a complaint of an undertrial prisoner, Nitin Telawane, Justice Dharmadhikari ordered a metropolitan magistrate at Kalyan to visit the Kalyan prison and submit a report on the status of basic facilities, quality of food served to inmates.
Telawane’s complaint was signed by 170 other inmates of the Kalyan prison. The prisoners have alleged that money orders for them are handed over after a cut. They have also complained that the products sold at the jail canteen were over priced.