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UP: Two women inmates not released despite parole after families refuse to take custody

The release orders were issued following the Supreme Court’s directive to decongest jails amid the Covid-19 pandemic by releasing those not charged with serious offences.

Written by Manish Sahu | Lucknow |
June 1, 2021 5:10:11 am
The total population of prisons across the state currently stands at 33,800

The Moradabad district prison on Monday said two of its women inmates had not been released despite orders from the government and a local court since their families had refused to accept their custody.

While the state government had approved the parole of 28-year-old convict Suneeta, a court in Amorha had granted interim bail to Naseema, 30.

The release orders were issued following the Supreme Court’s directive to decongest jails amid the Covid-19 pandemic by releasing those not charged with serious offences.

Prison officials took the two to their families but they refused to accept the inmates’ custody, officials said.

Suneeta has been in Moradabad jail since 2018, when she was arrested following the death of her minor son. In January, a court in Amroha sentenced her to four years in prison for culpable homicide not amounting to murder.

The Moradabad prison said they received her release order from the government two weeks ago. They initially took her to her husband Sunil Rathodi in Didauli, but he refused to take her custody.

“Suneeta then requested us to send her to her parents’ house in Delhi,” said Moradabad jail Superintendent Viresh Raj Sharma.

The police team took Suneeta to Delhi. But her elder brother too too declined to accept her custody. Sources said Naseema’s family in Bihar refused to identify her.

“It is mandatory that women inmates below 45 years are to be handed over to their families or relatives after they get released from jail. Suneeta and Naseema are interested to get out of jail but their families are not ready to keep them so we were forced to bring them back to jail,” said Sharma.

He added that instructions would be sought from the court and the state government. Sources said the jail administration would request the cancel the release orders of the two.

Prison officials said Naseema had been in the prison since her arrest by Sambhal police in May 2016 during a raid at a house in the Asmauli area. She is facing a charge under the Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act.

The prison staff initially took her to her home in Sambhal but found it locked. She was brought back to prison.

After Naseema told the prison officials that her parents live in a village in Bihar’s Siwan district, the jail administration requested the district police chief for a police team to take her there. Sources said Naseema’s family refused to identify her.

“A police team was arranged and she was taken to Bihar. No one was ready to take her custody so she was brought back to jail,” said a senior prison official.

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