The Madhya Pradesh government Thursday extended the parole granted to convicts lodged in jails across the state from 60 days to 120 days. The Madhya Pradesh High Court has already extended from 45 days to 90 days the interim bail granted to under trials.
Following an order by the Supreme Court to decongest overcrowded jails to check the spread of the novel coronavirus infection, the state government had released thousands of convicts using a provision to grant emergency parole.
The government had asked various jail superintendents to take applications from undertrials for interim bail and submit them to the district courts concerned. The National Legal Services Authority of India (NALSA) had laid down guidelines covering 11 categories of under trials who could be granted interim bail.
Jail sources told The Indian Express that about 6,500 prisoners, including convicts and undertrials, had been released. About 12,000 prisoners are likely to benefit from parole and interim bail, as per the government’s initial estimates.
A senior jail official told The Indian Express that the number was less because the high court allowed interim bail for only those under trials whose offences were punishable with jail term of five years or less.