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Jammu & Kashmir's High Powered Committee Directs The Release Of Jail Inmates Other Than Those Involved in Militancy/Serious Crimes

Sparsh Upadhyay
18 May 2021 1:02 PM GMT
Jammu & Kashmirs High Powered Committee Directs The Release Of Jail Inmates Other Than Those Involved in Militancy/Serious Crimes
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The High Powered Committee constituted for the Union Territory of Jammu & Kashmir on Monday (May 17) passed a slew of directions for the release of jail inmates except those involved in militancy-related cases and other serious crimes to decongest the prisons in the Union Territory of J&K. The Committed is headed by Justice Ali Mohammad Magrey, Executive Chairman, J&K...

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The High Powered Committee constituted for the Union Territory of Jammu & Kashmir on Monday (May 17) passed a slew of directions for the release of jail inmates except those involved in militancy-related cases and other serious crimes to decongest the prisons in the Union Territory of J&K.

The Committed is headed by Justice Ali Mohammad Magrey, Executive Chairman, J&K Legal Services Authority. Mr. Shaleen Kabra, Principal Secretary, Home Department, Dr. B. Srinivas, DGP (Prisons) are its members.

The committee has been constituted by the Jammu and Kashmir government, following an order by the Supreme Court on March 23, 2020 and May 07, 2021 directing the states and the UTs to decongest jails to ensure social distancing among the prisoners, while observing that overcrowding of prisons is a matter of serious concern in the wake of second wave of coronavirus outbreak.

At the outset, the committee appreciated the efforts of the prison department in not only managing the COVID-19 breakout in the prisons but also for maintaining hygiene in the jail premises. The Members of the Committee discussed and deliberated upon the proposed category of prisoners, who maybe considered for grant of interim bail for 90 days in view of the circumstances in which we are in.

As a first measure, it was decided that all the convicts/UTPs who were released on parole/interim bail on the earlier directions of the High Powered Committee shall be immediately released temporarily for a period of 90 days.

Justice Magrey directed the Member Secretary, J&K Legal Services Authority to coordinate with the other two members of the committee to find out the category of convicts/UTPs who can also be released pursuant to the directions of the Hon'ble Supreme Court.

Such an exercise shall be completed within a week and the report be placed before the committee, the Committee directed.

Justice Magrey has also directed the DGP (Prisons) to coordinate with the Health department to ensure vaccination of jail inmates as well as staff on priority.

Besides this, the Committee has directed the jail authorities to take appropriate steps by ensuring that the inmates and the staff wear masks and maintain social distancing and by keeping the frequently visited areas like kitchen, bathrooms etc. hygienic to prevent the spread of Covid-19.

Justice Ali Mohammad Magrey, lastly directed the Legal Service Institutions across the UT of J&K to provide the services of Panel Lawyers to the inmates who are eligible to be released from custody by moving applications on their behalf.

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