Prepare new list of convicts in open jails: HC
Unhappy with the system of selecting convicts and transferring them to open prisons, the Bombay High Court on Thursday directed jail authorities to prepare a new list based on the numbers of years a convict has served in prison.mumbai Updated: Oct 22, 2010 01:07 IST
Unhappy with the system of selecting convicts and transferring them to open prisons, the Bombay High Court on Thursday directed jail authorities to prepare a new list based on the numbers of years a convict has served in prison.
A division bench of justices AM Khanwilkar and PD Kode observed: “As soon as the convict becomes eligible to be transferred to an open prison, irrespective of whether formal application is made by him or not, he would be entitled to relief.”
The additional director general of police, prisons, was present in court with records of 611 convicts who are presently lodged in the open prisons.
The court had called for records following petition filed by Ravindra Patil, a life convict who has been in jail since 1994, after his application to be transferred to an open prison was rejected by the jail authorities.
After going through the records, the court noticed that many of the 611 convicts in the open prisons had spent less sentence compared to Patil.
Additional public prosecutor S Gajare justified this saying that the convicts were transferred after they made formal application to the jail authority. Terming this system as inappropriate, the high court observed: “It amounts to discrimination. Unequals will be treated as equals.”
The high court has asked jail authorities to consider Patil’s application, along with other convicts who have been in prison for a longer period. “Prepare a list based on seniority within eight weeks,” said Khanwilkar.