The High powered committee headed by Justice Hima Kohli of Delhi High Court has further relaxed the criteria for release of prisoners on an ‘Emergency Bail’.
The committee was instituted in lieu of the Suo Moto concerning the decongestion of prisons in the view of the outbreak of Coronavirus. The committee intended to relax the parameter that was set by the Director-General of prisons for releasing the prisoners. The committee further advanced some relaxations:
- Undertrial prisoners (UTPs), who are senior citizens more than 60 years of age and are in custody for six months or more, facing trial in a case which prescribes a maximum sentence of 10 years or less
- Undertrial prisoners (UTPs), who are less than 60 years of age and are in custody for one year or more, facing trial in a case which prescribes a maximum sentence of 10 years or less;
- Undertrial prisoners (UTPs)/Remand Prisoners (with respect to whom, Charge sheets are yet to be filed), who is in custody for 15 days or more, facing trial in a case which prescribes a maximum sentence of 7 years or less
Further, the committee laid down that bail mustn’t be granted to those who have been undergoing trial for large/ intermediary quantity under the NDPS act, those who are facing trials under Section 4 and 6 of POCSO Act, under Section 376,376(A-E) and acid attacks, undertrial who are foreign nationals. The committee further excluded who are facing trial under The Prevention of Corruption Act or cases being investigated by ED/CBI/NIA/ Special Cell of Delhi Police, crime branch, SFIO, Terror related cases or those who are undertrial in cases relating to Unlawful Activities Prevention Act or cases under Anti-national Activities.
The relaxation would further relieve around 1000 prisoners, however, a personal bond has to be executed as per the satisfaction of the jail superintendent.
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