Writ Of Habeas Corpus cannot be invoked for granting the premature release of convicted prisoners: SC

The held that a writ of cannot be filed or invoked to seek the premature release of a convicted . The bench consisted of Justices S. Abdul Nazeer and Deepak Gupta. The Court held that the matter of whether a is entitled to or lies within the domain of the Government and not the writ court.

The allowed habeas corpus writ petitions filed by prison convicts and sentenced for life imprisonment in murder cases. The Supreme Court considered appeals against such orders. The writ petitions were filed on the ground that the State has not given the benefit of premature release to these petitioners whereas many others have enjoyed the benefit.

The Court noted the already settled principles of the writ:

  • A writ of habeas corpus is available as a remedy in all cases where a person has been deprived of his/her personal liberty.
  • A writ of habeas corpus is allowed to a person under detention if his rights are violated.
  • It is secure liberty of the citizen from unlawful or unjustified detention irrespective of whether a person is detained by the State or is in private detention.

The bench observed that the grant of remission or parole is not a vested right of the prisoner. The Court added that the High Court should not have directed the release of the detained forthwith without initially directing the competent authority to decide on the matter.

However, the Bench invoked and ordered the release of prisoners in some appeals.

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