July 28, 2021 10:41:12 am
The Bombay High Court in a recent order directed Nashik jail authorities to release a prisoner who had been asked to surrender despite the emergency parole relief due to Covid-19 still in continuation. On May 31, the superintendent of Nashik jail had directed a 29-year old convict to surrender on July 16 after completion of 45 days since his release on emergency parole.
Following the Supreme Court orders last year, state governments had appointed high-power committees to decongest jails. The Maharashtra government’s committee, too, had made recommendations to release certain categories of prisoners. The undertrials were released on temporary bail while convicts were eligible for emergency parole. The provisions said the release was to be for an initial 45 days, following which it would be extended till the Epidemic Act remained in force due to the pandemic.
Lawyer Bharat Manghani, representing the convict Anil Yadav, told the court the prison had asked him to surrender within 45 days without the extension as per provisions. The division bench of Justice S S Shinde and Justice N J Jamadar was informed that there was no violation by Yadav during his parole, and hence, there was no reason to not grant him an extension.
“… in our view, it may not have been appropriate to again direct the petitioner to make an application for releasing him on emergency parole. The fact that the petitioner has surrendered on his own in accordance with the… order…. underscores the bonafide of the petitioner,” the court said.
It directed jail authorities to pass appropriate orders for his release on emergency parole.
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