Varanasi: Taking cognizance of a complaint regarding a 92-year-old prisoner chained to the bed, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) on Wednesday issued a notice to the chief secretary of the Uttar Pradesh government and sought an action taken report within six weeks.
The complaint dated May 14 was made by Lenin Raghuvanshi of a Varanasi bases NGO People’s Vigilance Committee of Human Rights (PVCHR). The complainant shared a newspaper clipping which stated that the victim, a 92-year-old inmate of the district jail of Etah was chained to bed during his treatment in a hospital. The ADG, Prisons has suspended a Jail warden for his negligence.
Terming it as a very serious matter, the Commission observed that it fails to understand what fear is there from a 92 years old inmate. It shows how insensitive and selfish the jail attendants were. From this incident, a further inference can be drawn, if a 92-year-old ill person is chained to bed during his treatment, the persons who can really be a threat, would be treated in more inhuman and barbaric manner.
The Commission further observed that keeping a 92 years old ill person in jails indicates towards malfunctioning of Sentence Review Boards in the State. The larger and Institutional issue is, for the protecting the Human rights of the prisoners, the functioning of Sentence Review Boards in the State of UP should be improved. Under section 433 Cr. PC and Prison Rules, the Government has powers to commute the Sentence through Sentence Review Board. Functioning of Sentence Review Board in professional manner is necessary to decongest jails and relieve the burden of Government form taking care of a 92 years old ill person.
The Chief Secretary of UP Government has been was asked to explain as to when was the last meeting of Sentence Review Board held, how many cases are pending before Sentence Review Board, how many sentences have been commuted by Sentence Review Board in year 2020 and 2019, and what system is being followed in Jails for referring the matters to Sentence Review Boards.