A high-powered committee constituted for decongestion of jails Thursday decided to extend the period of special parole and special interim bail of the prisoners who have been released in view of the Covid-19 outbreak. The committee granted an extension till November 10.
A special meeting of the committee was held under the chairmanship of Justice Jaswant Singh of Punjab and Haryana High Court and Executive Chairman of the UT State Legal Services Authority.
IG Prisons Ombir Singh and CJM Ashok Kr Mann also briefed the committee regarding the action to be taken in compliance with the directions and recommendations issued and made vide in the previous meetings of the committee.
Considering the present Covid-19 situation, the jail authorities had requested that the time of return of prisoners be extended reasonably and in the meantime, a detailed plan for re-admission of prisoners into jail premises be chalked for facilitating smooth re-admission of prisoners and for avoiding any risk of Covid-19 spread.
The committee specified that in order to prevent Covid-19 outbreak in jail premises, rapid antigen test for Covid-19 will be conducted for all the arrested persons, before their admission into the jail premises.
The Health Authorities UT, Chandigarh, have also been directed to conduct the necessary tests on priority basis and only those with negative report be admitted to the jail premises. Further, in case any arrestee is found positive for Covid-19, they will be admitted for treatment at Prisoners’ Ward of Government Hospital (a dedicated Covid-19 hospital) and as they fully-recover, they should be admitted into jail. The jail authorities will also need to take the aforementioned directions into consideration while preparing a re-admission plan.
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