Expressing concern over overcrowding in jails, the Bombay High Court has asked the Maharashtra Government to establish a new prison with kitchen and other facilities which would solve the problem of space constraint. A bench of justices Abhay Oka and Amjad Sayed, hearing a petition, asked the state government to submit a plan for setting up a new prison by January 2017 so that the problem of overcrowding in jails is solved.
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Such a prison should be an ideal one with all necessary infrastructure and facilities required by house inmates, said the bench in a recent order.
Citing an instance, the bench said that Central Prison at Arthur Road in Mumbai was also very crowded earlier but the government built another prison at Taloja in Navi Mumbai and this solved the problem of overcrowding in the jail.
Similarly on these lines, the government should consider setting up a new prison which not only provides space to the inmates but also has all the modern facilities for the prisoners to perform their daily chores, the bench added.
The court was hearing a petition filed by Shaikh Ibrahim Abdul who is lodged in Yerwada jail in Pune.
The petitioner’s lawyer Uday Warunjikar pointed out the “poor” living conditions in the prison and urged the court to issue directions to tackle the problem.
At a previous hearing, the government had informed that the food quality of Yerwada jail was good but there was space crunch in the prison. It said that Yerwada jail has the capacity to house 2,323 prisoners but currently the prison has about 6,000 inmates.
The Bench then asked the government to submit a plan of a new prison to resolve the problem of overcrowding in jails.