Written bySiddhant Pandey ·
The coronavirus outbreak has pushed prisons across India to reduce crowding.
Inmates are being granted bail or parole as a precautionary measure since India's overcrowded incarceration facilities could prove to be hotspots for the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
In light of this, the Kerala High Court on Monday granted bail to undertrials till April 30.
Here are more details.
According to ANI, the Kerala HC has granted interim bail to trial prisoners and remand accused in light of the coronavirus outbreak. The interim bail has reportedly been granted till April 30.
Earlier on March 16, the Supreme Court noted that the social distancing advisory cannot be followed in overcrowded prisons.
It had asked states about the measures they intend to adopt to prevent an outbreak among prisoners.
On March 23, the SC suggested the grant of interim bail/parole to prisoners convicted of or charged with offenses that warrant up to a seven-year jail term.
ANI reported Monday that Madhya Pradesh has amended the MP Prisoner's Leave Rules, 1989, allowing prisoners to be on parole for up to 60 days.
The state also announced the release of 5,000 convicts on emergency parole of 60 days. Another 3,000 undertrials are to be released on interim bail of 45 days in the next two days.
Punjab has decided to release 6,000 prisoners facing punishment up to seven years. Punjab Jail Minister Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa said convicted prisoners will be released on parole for six weeks and undertrial prisoners on interim bail for six weeks.
Haryana Jail Minister Ranjit Singh Chautala said the state has decided to release prisoners—convicted and undertrial—facing punishment up to seven years on parole or bail.
In Maharashtra, 601 inmates were released to reduce crowding at 37 prisons, according to PTI. The prisoners were released over three days from Friday to Sunday, Additional Director General of Police (Prisons) Sunil Ramanand said.
Authorities of Asia's largest prison facility, Delhi's Tihar Jail, said last week that they will release 3,000 prisoners: 1,500 convicts on parole or furlough, and 1,500 undertrials on interim bail.
None of those released would be hardened criminals.
On Saturday, the Tihar Jail released 419 prisoners: 356 on interim bail for 45 days and 63 on eight-week emergency parole.
In Uttar Pradesh, 11,000 inmates—convicts and undertrials—will be released from 71 jails on bail or parole. Similarly, Maharashtra also plans to release 11,000 prisoners to decongest prisons.
The inmates are eligible for release only if they are facing up to a seven-year jail term.
The Gujarat government on Sunday said it plans to release 1,200 prisoners, including convicts and undertrials.
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