Bombay HC permits two convicts on death row to pursue studies while in prison

Published on Apr 29, 2022 06:43 PM IST

In an order passed on April 18, a bench of Justices PB Varale and SM Modak said the convicts' desire to pursue education was "welcome" and directed Yerwada prison authorities, where the convicts are lodged, to "adopt a humanitarian approach," and "extend necessary assistance" to help them pursue their studies.

Bombay High Court. (PTI FILE PHOTO)
Bombay High Court. (PTI FILE PHOTO)
PTI | , Mumbai

The Bombay High Court permitted two convicts sentenced to death in 2017 for raping and killing a minor girl to pursue their studies through open university while in prison. 

In an order passed on April 18, a bench of Justices PB Varale and SM Modak said the convicts' desire to pursue education was "welcome" and directed Yerwada prison authorities, where the convicts are lodged, to "adopt a humanitarian approach," and "extend necessary assistance" to help them pursue their studies.

 Convicts Jitendra Shinde and Nitin Bhailume were sentenced to death by a trial court in November 2017 for raping and murdering a minor girl in 2016 in Kopardi in the state's Ahmednagar district. 

The Maharashtra government moved HC for confirmation of the death sentence, while Shinde and Bhailume moved HC challenging their conviction. Both matters are pending in HC. In 2019, the duo filed a plea in HC seeking that they be permitted to study while in prison. 

On April 18 this year, Maharashtra government counsel Sangeeta Shinde told HC that once the admission process at the Yashwanrao Chavan Open University Divisional Centre, Pune, began for academic year 2022-23, the two petitioners will be granted admission. 

The bench then directed Yerawada Central Jail authorities to take appropriate steps to get the two convicts admitted in the courses of their choice. "We further observe that as the petitioners have expressed their desire to pursue academic course in Open University, such desire be treated as welcome steps, and the prison authorities to extend all necessary assistance by adopting humanitarian approach to the desire of the petitioners," HC said. 

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