State Legal Aid Committee : Press Release

Division Bench of the Supreme Court of India comprising of JJ Mr. J. Chelmeswar & Justice Mr. R.K. Agrawal today directed the Union of India to file a status report on the foreign prisoners in Indian jails including about 700 Pakistani prisoners about their trials, conviction and whether prisoners (to be mentioned have completed half of their sentence) (Other than like prisoners).

The Supreme Court had issued this direction to the Union of India with a clear orders that the District Sessions Judge or Trial Magistrates throughout the country shall visit prisons to identify the prisoners who have completed half or more than half of the sentence, other than like prisoners and directed the Judicial Officers to release such prisoners forthwith who had completed half of their sentence against a personal bond.

Prof.Bhim Singh today while mentioning the matter before the Division Bench submitted that status quo report on this matter has not been replied by the majority of the states. He also submitted that the magistrates concern have not recorded this investigation in connection with the foreign prisoners. He said that this order of the Hon’ble Supreme Court is applicable to all the prisoners whether Indian or foreigners or Pakistanis.

The Additional Advocate General prayed the court for another four weeks to submit a detailed reply on the issue. It was on his request that the Supreme Court granted four weeks to the Union of India to file its detailed reply. Prof.Bhim Singh said there are thousands of prisoners who shall get the benefit of this order of this judgment of the Supreme Court in his petition.

He said that Union of India have been playing hide and seek with the Apex Court only for political considerations to defeat the mandate of the law under Article 21 of the Constitution of India.