12 Sep 2023 11:05 AM GMT
The Punjab & Haryana High Court has made it clear that a life convict has no inherent right to claim premature release as it is merely a concession, granted at the discretion of the State government after looking into various factors such as the conduct of the convict in jail, gravity and nature of the offence etc.The bench of Justice Jasjit Singh Bedi said,“A convict has no inherent...
The Punjab & Haryana High Court has made it clear that a life convict has no inherent right to claim premature release as it is merely a concession, granted at the discretion of the State government after looking into various factors such as the conduct of the convict in jail, gravity and nature of the offence etc.
The bench of Justice Jasjit Singh Bedi said,
“A convict has no inherent right to claim premature release as life imprisonment means the whole life of the convict in jail. Therefore, there is no indefeasible right of such prisoner to be unconditionally released on the expiry of any particular term including remissions. However, the appropriate Government must pass a separate order remitting the unexpired portion of the sentence if so warranted.”
These observations were made while deciding a writ petition filed by a life convict against Haryana government's decision to defer considering his case for premature release for two years. The petitioner is undergoing a life sentence under Sections, 460, 411 IPC pursuant to his conviction in 2006.
In terms of the policy issued in 2002, the petitioner had deposited all his documents for considering him for premature release. The State Level Committee had earlier recommended that his case be deferred and re-considered after 20 years of actual sentence. The High Court gave an opportunity to the petitioner to move a fresh representation within a period of 40 days.
Following this, the petitioner again applied for premature release but the State deferred his case for 02 years.
The counsel for the petitioner submitted that the case of the petitioner was covered by the policy of premature release issued in 2002 and the petitioner had completed the requisite period of 20 years of total sentence upto 23.12.2022. So, he was fully eligible for premature release.
The counsel for the State contended that the petitioner had multiple cases registered against him. While in custody, contraband was recovered from his possession for which he was awarded with punishment of 15 days separate confinement by the Superintendent Jail, added the State. It was also contended that petitioner was a habitual offender and his case was not covered under the guidelines issued by the Supreme Court in case of Life Convict Laxman Naskar v. State of West Bengal & another.
Considering the submissions, the bench said the State Level Committee wants to further watch the conduct of the petitioner on account of his criminal antecedents and therefore, it dismissed the petition.
Appearance: Kartar Singh, Advocate for the petitioner.
Neeraj Poswal, Asst. A.G., Haryana.
Citation: LiveLaw (PH) 170
Case Title: Subhash v. State of Haryana & Ors.
Case no.: CRWP-6205-2023
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