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'This Is Too Much' : Delay In Release Of Agra Prisoners After Grant Of Bail Prompts Supreme Court To Take Suo Motu Cognizance

Srishti Ojha
17 July 2021 3:55 AM GMT
This Is Too Much : Delay In Release Of Agra Prisoners After Grant Of Bail Prompts Supreme Court To Take Suo Motu Cognizance
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The Supreme Court's suo motu case on the issue of delay of release of prisoners after grant of bail was prompted by a recent news report which stated that the convicts lodged in Agra Central Jail have not been released even after 3 days of the order granting them bail.On July 8, the Supreme Court had ordered to "immediately" release 13 prisoners on interim bail, after finding that they...

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The Supreme Court's suo motu case on the issue of delay of release of prisoners after grant of bail was prompted by a recent news report which stated that the convicts lodged in Agra Central Jail have not been released  even after 3 days of the order granting them bail.

On July 8, the Supreme Court had ordered to "immediately" release 13 prisoners on interim bail, after finding that they have been languishing in jail for periods ranging from 14 to 22 years, despite establishing that they were juveniles at the time of offence. The maximum period of sentence for an offence committed as a juvenile is three years.

However, a report in the Times of India showed that they were not released "immediately", as the prison authorities were awaiting the receipt of the Supreme Court order by post.

"This is too much", the Chief Justice of India NV Ramana said on Friday, expressing exasperation at the insistence of prison authorities on receipt of bail orders by post in this age of information technology.

"In this age of information and communication technology, we are still looking at the skies for the pigeons to communicate the orders", the CJI exclaimed.

Taking suo motu cognizance of the issue, the bench led by the CJI observed that the Supreme Court was thinking of implementing a system to electronically transmit bail orders to prisons so that the release of prisoners on bail will not be delayed.

The CJI said that the Supreme Court is contemplating to adopt the procedure termed as FASTER : Fast and Secured Transmission of Electronic Records System, for transmission of authenticated copies of the Judgments, final orders, interim orders to the concerned Courts and Tribunals.

"To enable the same, we would like to know from the State Governments/Union Territories the details of whether efficient internet facilities are available in their respective prisons. If not, they are directed to suggest alternative if any", the bench said in the order.

The bench, also comprising Justices L Nageswara Rao and AS Bopanna, directed the Secretary General of the Supreme Court to submit a proposal suggesting the modalities to implement FASTER system within two weeks.

The Secretary General was directed to coordinate/consult with the Amicus Curiae,Mr. Dushyant Dave, Senior counsel, Mr. Tushar Mehta, Solicitor General of India, the National Informatics Centre or other Government Authorities, in this behalf.

The matter will be considered next after two weeks.

Case title - IN RE DELAY IN RELEASE OF CONVICTS AFTER GRANT OF BAIL [SMW(C) No. 4/2021]

Click here to read/download the order










 


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