October 23, 2019 2:53:16 am
MAHARASHTRA RANKS the highest when it comes to the number of convicts sentenced to capital punishment, stated the latest all-India prison data released in the Prison Statistics of India, 2017 on Monday.
As on December 31, 2017, when the data was collected, 347 convicts were awarded the death penalty in jails across India. While the number accounts for 0.2 per cent of the entire prison population, 19 per cent of such prisoners are in Maharashtra.
The state has 66 of these prisoners across its central jails. The data further stated that 24 of these prisoners were sentenced to death in 2017 and only one prisoner’s sentence was commuted to life the same year.
At 3,835, the state also has the fourth highest number of prisoners serving life imprisonment. Further, at 4,761, it has the second highest number of prisoners released due to acquittals from lower courts and the highest number of inmates — at 5,687 — released from jail after filing appeals before higher courts.
According to the report, at 129, the state ranks the highest when it comes to the number of convicts in prison on charges of rioting and those convicted for offences in property crimes (1,514). It also has the highest number of undertrials and convicts from other states and the second highest number of undertrials and convicts from abroad. They included 98 convicts and three undertrials from South American countries, 12 Bangladeshi convicts and 137 undertrials.
Moreover, while the state has the fourth highest capacity to accommodate inmates — 24,745 prisoners — at 33,699, it also has the fourth highest number of inmates. It is the sixth highest state when it comes to overcrowded prisons.
The occupancy rate of prisons in Maharashtra is 136.2 per cent. Over half the share of its convict population is in the age group of 30 to 50 years, while in the category of undertrials, the highest share of its population — at 49.6 per cent — is in the category of 18 to 30 years.
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