The Aurangabad bench of Bombay High Court has directed the Maharashtra government to decide on emergency parole of prisoners from outside of Maharashtra lodged in jails across the state within 15 days.
These prisoners were excluded from granting of parole as per the directive of the High Powered Committee (HPC), which was formed after the Supreme Court directed states to decongest jails in view of Covid-19 pandemic.
The direction came last week, when a division bench of Justice Tanaji V Nalawade and Justice Mukund G Sewlikar was hearing a clutch of petitions challenging the HPC directive, which refused emergency parole to prisoners from outside of Maharashtra.
The petitioner inmates, through advocates Sharada P Chate and V P Narwade, referred to the central government’s August 22 communication with states to lift restrictions on inter-state and intra-state movement of persons, goods and services. and said that inmates were required to be released on emergency parole and be given benefit of the HPC decision to decongest jails.
After hearing submissions, the court said that the state government notification on May 8 showed it was issued for a ‘particular purpose’ and for taking care of the situation created at that time. The bench said the government can revoke or modify the said notification and by that further reliefs can be stopped or amended.
The HC noted, “In view of such power vested with the state government, it is desirable that the aforesaid circumstances are considered by the state Government and further steps are taken.”
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