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Bombay High Court to form panel to examine prison conditions


The Bombay High Court said it would form a committee of experts to examine the living conditions in jails across Maharashtra.

A division bench headed by Chief Justice Manjula Chellur made the announcement while hearing a public interest litigation filed by Sangli-based lawyer B G Ligade.

The committee, comprising lawyers, psychologists, doctors and other experts, would study the facilities provided to jail inmates and submit a report to the high court.

The court would monitor the situation in jails from time to time, and issue directions if necessary, the judges said.

Citing a reply under the Right to Information, the petition alleged that medical and other facilities are not provided in jails in the state, including open prisons.

In the open prisons, an inmate is not allowed to go outside the limits of the specified area even for check-up or treatment without permission of the officer concerned, and such rules might be fatal during a medical emergency, said the PIL.

Open prisons have minimal security and serve as reform centres.

The petition alleged that food, clothing, bedding, wages for prison labour and medical aid are not provided at these prisons.

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