Indian Criminal Justice System reform

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svenkat
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Re: Indian Criminal Justice System reform

Postby svenkat » 22 May 2015 12:42

http://thewire.in/2015/05/19/more-than-bad-maths-four-big-errors-that-let-jayalalithaa-off-the-hook/

Now, more serious errors of duplication have been found in Judge CR Kumaraswamy’s verdict. It now appears that the High Court has, erroneously, added loan amounts twice to the income of the defendants. This means that the amount calculated by the judge as ‘explained income’ — the basis on which the court has exonerated Jayalalithaa and others — is a highly inflated figure.


the High Court appears to have made some more glaring errors. Item number 8 in the table on Page 852 is a loan of Rs 1.57 crore in the name of VN Sudhakaran, Jayalalithaa’s foster son and one of the accused. A comparison with Pages 136 and 137 of the trial court order shows the discrepancy. Three pieces of evidence are cited in this particular loan – one, a letter from Sudhakaran to Indian Bank requesting a loan of Rs 1.57 crore. The second evidence is a letter from Indian Bank sanctioning a loan amount of Rs 1.33 crore and not the full amount requested. The third bit of evidence is the statement of accounts from the bank’s records. The trial court has taken the outstanding balance of the loan amount as income. The High Court, however, in a glaring error, takes into account only the first piece of evidence i.e. the loan amount requested by Sudhakaran, which was not even sanctioned in full.


Another glaring error in the loan table is that of item number 3 – a loan of Rs 90 lakhs taken by Jayalalithaa from Indian Bank. The HC has taken this into account despite that loan having been sanctioned in August 1996, after the ‘check period’ of the case, i.e. after her first term as Chief Minister of the state had ended.


IT returns as proof of income

The Karnataka High Court overturned the guilty verdict of the trial court by arguing that the lower court had not considered the Income Tax returns of the defendants. Judge Kumaraswamy then added this income declared in the IT returns of the defendants to clear them of a large chunk of disproportionate assets.

“There are many prior cases where the Supreme Court has said that in cases involving disproportionate assets, the source of the income must be explained convincingly,” said the retired judge(K.Chandru). “Income tax returns are not reliable since they do not verify the source of the income. It is wrong to accept IT returns as proof of income unless the source of the income is proven to be valid,” he said.


On Page 875 of the HC order, the judge agrees that IT returns filed as an afterthought cannot be relied upon. “When Income Tax returns have not been filed for many years, it disentitles the assessee substantially. A doubt arises in the genuineness of the Income Tax returns. But when it is produced before the Income Tax department after a long time and is not produced when its production was warranted, it is a suspicious circumstance against the genuineness of the claim of the assessee in respect of this subscription item i.e. Namadhu MGR.”


However, Kumaraswamy proceeds to accept the income in part i.e. a sum of Rs 4 crores. “In effect, this is an afterthought explanation that anyone can give in a DA case,” said the retired judge. “So basically I can wait until a chargesheet is filed, then I can add all my unexplained income and file my IT returns after that – I will get away scot free. This judgment can be quoted in cases involving IT returns as well. Jurists should wake up to the impact this could have on the social structure, the economy and political structure. If afterthought IT returns are accepted, this means black money can easily come into the system and be laundered by filing a simple IT return,” he said.

“Under this head, the High Court may be wrong and there was no justification to ignore the findings given by Cunha,” said retired judge Chandru. “Sec 19 (3) (a) of the Prevention of Corruption Act does not allow an appellate court (in this case Karnataka HC) to take a different view from the special court in such matters unless there was a failure of justice,” he said.


Foreign remittance

Apart from the acceptance of IT returns which were filed belatedly, in the case of birthday gifts too, a curious case of a foreign remittance included in this list draws attention. This Rs 77 lakh remittance is the subject of a CBI investigation. The case was dismissed by the Madras High Court and the matter has been mired in legal technicalities and pending before the Supreme Court since 2012.

“Receiving gifts from foreign countries by a minister is completely prohibited by the Foreign Exchange Regulation Act (FERA),” said retired judge Chandru. “It can be accepted as an income for the purpose of the present case if it is shown that it was remitted by a bonafide person.”

The retired judge quoted the Supreme Court to ask whether this means the judiciary encourages politicians to take bribes in kind rather than cash. “If public servants are allowed to accept presents when they are prohibited under a penalty from accepting bribes, they would easily circumvent the prohibition by accepting the bribe in the shape of a present,” he said.

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Re: Indian Criminal Justice System reform

Postby svenkat » 24 May 2015 07:38

http://www.ndtv.com/tamil-nadu-news/truth-vs-hype-exclusive-how-the-cost-of-sentry-shed-helped-acquit-jayalalithaa-765499

The judgement had fixed Rs. 250 per square foot as the flat rate. Using this figure, the cost of properties drops from Rs. 27 crores alleged by prosecution, to only Rs. 5 crores.

This one calculation alone helped bring down her unaccounted wealth (referred to as disproportionate assets) from Rs. 66 crores, to Rs. 37 crores.

But how did the judgement arrive at this rate of Rs. 250?

The answer is buried in page 786 of the 1000-page judgement: the figure is derived from a quote given by the Public Works Department (PWD) for the average cost of construction for a sentry shed in Chennai!

The PWD submitted a cost of Rs. 310 per square foot, which the judgement further reduces to Rs. 250 per square foot, applying that rate uniformly to Ms Jayalalithaa's and Ms Sasikala's properties.

These range from farmhouses, bungalows, apartments and factories scattered across Chennai, Tamil Nadu, and even one in Hyderabad.

We personally visited two such properties, to establish how strikingly different they were: one, a printing unit in an industrial area in south Chennai (now being converted into the new offices of Jaya TV), and the second a commercial complex in upmarket central Chennai.

BV Acharya, Special Public Prosecutor in the case, says this calculation has no basis. "How can rate of sentry shed be applied to all these properties," he told NDTV. He says the calculations for the rate of construction by the investigative agency were done building to building, arriving at the figure of Rs. 27 crores.

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Re: Indian Criminal Justice System reform

Postby Sachin » 25 May 2015 17:02

x-posted from Internal Security Thread
---
Mean while in Kerala. From what I hear the state government plans to appeal on the verdict. But from what I could interpret of the ruling, a person can hold Maoist views but cannot be picked up by the police unless he indulges in any criminal activity. Don't know if the same logic holds for potential ISIS recruits, Jehadi sympathisers etc.
Being Maoist not a crime, can't detain for merely being one: Kerala HC
CPI hails Kerala HC ruling on holding of Maoist views
Congress endorses HC ruling that being Maoist is not a crime

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Re: Indian Criminal Justice System reform

Postby svenkat » 24 Jun 2015 14:26

The judge is maintaining the 'high standards' we have come to expect from the Madras HC of late.

http://www.thenewsminute.com/article/madras-hc-shocker-judge-directs-convicted-rapist-minor-%E2%80%98mediate%E2%80%99-and-%E2%80%98settle%E2%80%99-case-31481

Invoking the name of Islam, Hinduism and Christianity, a judge of the Madras High Court has allowed a man found guilty of raping a minor to ‘settle' the matter by mediation. V Mohan was found guilty of rape of a minor in 2002 by a mahila court in Cuddalore, the rape survivor had later given birth to a child. Mohan later approached the Madras High Court with an appeal against his conviction.

A judgment by Justice P Devadass has asked the mediation centre at the Madras High Court to assist lawyers of the victim and the man convicted and in case of a compromise, make a ‘Memorandum of Understanding.’

"Women are the soft targets of male lust. For anything and everything, they are being blamed. Very often, they are being forgotten that they(who?) too are humanbeings," :( says the order.

The judge later goes on to say that, "As an alternative to the time consuming, cumbersome, expensive conventional court system, a new dispute resolving mechanism has been adopted by Indian Legal System. It is Alternative Dispute Resolution method (A.D.R.)."

"In fact, even in Islam, Hinduism and Christianity, there are instances of solving the disputes in a non-belligerent manner. The result of it is very good because there is 'no victor, no vanquished'. :( Thus, 'Trinity' :-o propagates humanity."

"He should be enabled to participate in the deliberations as a freeman :x and vent his feelings, open his mind and moorings. 'Where there is a will, there is a way'.

He also referred to a similar case that he had referred for mediation. The case relates to a man raping a minor girl and was nearing a ‘happy conclusion :(( ‘, judge said.

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Re: Indian Criminal Justice System reform

Postby Aditya_V » 24 Jun 2015 14:39

I am sure the woman will a very "HAPPY LIFE" and get "RESPECT" from a man who raped her. Where is the outrage.

Tomorrow when this shame descends to domestic violence, will the Judge take the blame. Rape is not just lust which can be settled by Masterbat****, it of a much more higher level, a man to rape a woman must use some of drugs/ violence coupled with humliation psycological pressure. God save India from judges like this.

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Re: Indian Criminal Justice System reform

Postby Sachin » 25 Jun 2015 11:28

Aditya_V wrote:I am sure the woman will a very "HAPPY LIFE" and get "RESPECT" from a man who raped her. Where is the outrage.

May be legal experts out here can help me here. Are judges in India duty bound to give verdicts based on some standardised pattern? I mean as simple as a murder can be sentenced from x to y years (nothing more, nothing less). Because I am wondering whether all these kind of "mediation" etc., are actually allowed in the established law of the country; which the judges are to base their verdicts upon. In that case why not the relatives of a murder victim and the murderer "mediate", arrive at a price and get over with the whole charade? That is what many middle eastern countries do any way (the amount paid is the "blood money").

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Re: Indian Criminal Justice System reform

Postby Yagnasri » 25 Jun 2015 12:26

No formats.

All civil cases can be mediated and settled in a amicable manner. Even in old days elders in the society used to do that. In criminal cases there are two kinds of offences - Compoundable and non Compoundable, which basically mean cases which can be settled amicably and can not be settled amicably. major crimes like Rape etc can not be settled and result in punishment.

However in some rare case/exceptional cases like rape are settled as per some High Courts and can not be done by some High Courts - example - convicted was married to victim with two kids the case was allowed to be compounded. Some High courts have refused to compound even in such cases and people were sent to jail.

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Re: Indian Criminal Justice System reform

Postby Sachin » 25 Jun 2015 12:51

Yagnasri wrote:However in some rare case/exceptional cases like rape are settled as per some High Courts and can not be done by some High Courts - example - convicted was married to victim with two kids the case was allowed to be compounded. Some High courts have refused to compound even in such cases and people were sent to jail.

Thanks. But who defines "rare case/exceptional cases"? Is there a broad guideline for that? Or some kind of case laws(?) as they call it? Or else it is left purely to the discretion of the individual judge hearing the case? My feeble understanding is of US judicial laws are that they have some form of "mandatory" sentencing. For example, a person convicted for drug offences have to be sent to prison for 10 years minimum. Some of the judge positions getting filled through elections, it seems judges also do not show any leniency and give the maximum possible sentence (in a hope that they would get elected next time as well ;) ).

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Re: Indian Criminal Justice System reform

Postby svenkat » 25 Jun 2015 16:23

http://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/how-can-i-live-with-him/article7352045.ece?utm_source=MostPopular&utm_medium=Chennai&utm_campaign=WidgetPromo

It has been seven long years, but uncertainty and anxiety still loom large over 22-year old Lakshmi (name changed) of a remote village in Cuddalore district, as the unwed mother spends every other day unsure and confused over what the future holds for her and her six-year-old daughter.

Speaking to The Hindu over phone , the rape survivor, whose case has been referred for mediation by a single judge of the Madras High Court, says she was not aware of the order but mediation was initiated even earlier by the family of the convict, who, incidentally, lives just next door in her village.

“But how can I live with him? Would he accept the solution if it had happened to one of his sisters? Not even once has he visited us. He has not even touched this girl even once. He has been maintaining that she was not his child until the DNA test. Why has he not come for a compromise before he was jailed,” she asks, pertinently. The incident happened when she was in Class 10 and the convict was a college-goer in Chennai and visited his native place on weekends.

“He is coming for a compromise so that he can be out of prison. I hate the very sight of him and how can I live with him as man and wife? I don’t have any sense of belonging to him,” she says. Over seven years since, the survivor, presently being supported by her relatives is still confused over how to settle this overwhelming issue in her life.

“How can I live in this world with this girl? If not for my daughter, I would have remained this way. But what will happen to me and my daughter now? After my mother, who will take care of us?”

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Re: Indian Criminal Justice System reform

Postby svenkat » 14 Aug 2015 20:45

http://www.newindianexpress.com/columns/Maran-Fraud-Political-Vendetta-Just-Misuse/2015/08/14/article2973303.ece

Maran, who was Telecom Minister from 2004 to 2007, smuggled out a telephone exchange with 341 high speed telephone lines from BSNL to his Chennai home in Gopalapuram. This was kept out of the system and held as secret. The rent for each of these lines for a normal client of BSNL is `10 lakh per year, which alone would work out to `136 crore for four years from 2004-05 to 2007-08 [the lines ran till June 2007]. Maran added another 323 high speed lines in his newly built mansion in the posh Boat Club area in January 2007 and they functioned till June 2007.

For the years 2006-07 and 2007-08 the rent for the 323 lines would be an additional `65 cr. In sum, rent alone tops over `200 crore for 764 lines. The `1.2 crore Maran generously agreed to pay and which seemed to have impressed the court is just the cash-cost incurred by BSNL for laying cables to Maran’s home. Will the CBI tell the court that the loss is minimum `200 crore, not counting the immeasurable user charges. Will the CBI also tell the court that a bribe of `265 — yes just `265 in 1974 — entailed imprisonment of one-and-a-half years and fine of `50,000 in 2014 when the accused was 76 years old and the case 30 years old. [See Criminal Appeal No 404 of 2014 decided by the Supreme Court in February 2014] It is judgments like this that will deter one from corruption.
Not accepting generous offers to pay the bribes back. It is not known whether the Attorney General, who argued the case, told the court with what intent and purpose the two 764-line capacity high speed fraudulent telephone exchanges were installed. Was the court informed that Marans had surreptitiously connected the illicit high speed lines from their homes to the Sun TV network miles away and to homes of its staff all around Chennai through optic fibre cables for its business?

The AG should ask why the telephone exchanges were installed in the official name of the Chief General Manager, Chennai Telephones in Maran’s homes. It does not need a seer to say that Marans did it only lend the colour of genuine official use to mask the fraudulent misuse. Should the AG not ask whether it was to conceal the real, fraudulent intent? If he has not, the AG should ask the court when the case comes up on Sept 14: “Is this just misuse of power, my lord? Or is it a deeper and highly meditated conspiracy and fraud?” He ought to tell the court that the actual user fee of the 764 lines is not measurable because they were intentionally kept out of the monitoring system by deceptively designating the use as official.

The CBI letter to the Ministry of Telecom [Sept 2007] says that in just one line and in just one month over 48 lakh units of calls have emanated, showing massive multi-media use. This was when the UPA I government was in power.

On this basis, the charge for 764 lines for over 40 months could be several hundred crores. Should the AG not tell the court the very fact that 764 lines have been kept out of the system betrays the conspiracy to conceal the actual use and amount chargeable? Hope the CBI affidavit will contain all basic facts and the AG will ask the right questions.


On the shocking “vendetta” word, the CBI needs to tell court that the prosecution against Maran started by the CBI was stifled by the previous government. The facts are: Maran was telecom minister from June 2004 to June 2007 and got the 764 high speed lines surreptitiously installed - 341 lines in his old home in June 2004 and 323 lines in his new home in January 2007; he resigned as telecom minister when the Maran brothers quarreled with their grand uncle Dr Kalaignar Karunanidhi in June 2007; the CBI made initial inquiries and in September 2007 asked the telecom ministry for permission to investigate; after Marans bought peace with the grand uncle in 2008 the matter was put in cold storage till 2011; in June 2011 the media - the New Indian Express - exposed the fraud; till the Supreme Court was moved in 2013 the previous government did not even register an FIR though the CBI had requested for it in 2007; only under court pressure the CBI registered the FIR; the CBI began probing the matter only after the new CBI director took office; other accused were arrested but the lower courts in Chennai where Marans exert huge power did not allow custodial interrogation; the CBI wants custodial interrogation of Maran because he alone would know how the 764 high speed lines that stood installed in his homes and connected to Sun TV were made use of in Sun TV premises. Was Maran running his ministry’s office from Sun TV premises, which was then situated in DMK’s headquarters? Or was Sun TV uplinking its programmes free of cost? Or were the thousands of DMK cadre and leaders making use of the free high speed lines? The AG should ask why should Maran lay optic fibre cables from his home to Sun TV/DMK offices and then drive and work from there as minister? Why could he not do it from his home? For that, he will need just one high speed line. If he were greedy, may be two. But why 764 high speed lines? Unless Marans were kleptomaniacs, who steal without intent of personal use or gain, why smuggle away 764 high speed lines for no purpose? The AG should also ask: if the present government investigates the case that was buried by the previous government, is that vendetta?

The AG must also tell the court that the smuggled telephone lines breach national security. How illegal telephones were a security threat was discussed at a meeting on April 26, 2003 chaired by the Telecom Secretary himself and attended by intelligence agencies and cellular operators. This was before Maran became Telecom Minister and smuggled away from BSNL his 764-line exchanges. In its order of May 24, 2010, the Telecom Appellate Tribunal [TDSAT] ruled: “Operation of clandestine/illegal telecommunications facilities has serious implications from national security point of view. This is a matter of serious concern and all possible steps need to be taken by all concerned to curb such activities.”


The AG should ask the court: Is it a simple case of misuse of telephone lines to be closed by Maran’s generous offer of `1.2 crore? The AG must also say that there is a real security angle to the case [see ‘Mr Attorney, You Got Your Facts, Law Right on Marans?’ NIE dated July 13, 2015] The AG should ask the court whether this did not call for a probe from the national security perspective. Unfortunately the AG cannot put these vital questions to the court because he has given an opinion in another case favouring Maran, unless he says that he was not briefed on these aspects. Will he? God alone knows. If he does not, the court will be unaware of this vital aspect of the case.

Freewheeling observations of a judge without the other side filing its affidavit have no value in law. And yet the entire media prints it as if it were an acquittal of Maran. That is why wise judges resist the temptation to make casual observations. The real issue in corruption cases is who is the wrong doer. Higher the official stricter should be the rule.

But the judicial trend seems to be the other way round, like in imprisonment and fine in the `265 corruption case of petty official mentioned above and being considerate to the strong. Even `1.2 crore may not be a big amount for Maran, but for the nation it is. If a minister is the wrong doer, the punishment must be stricter. In other cases, it is just offence. Not in a minister’s case. As a minister, Maran had taken the oath that he would act in “accordance with the Constitution and the law”. His setting up of a fraudulent telephone exchange in his home as the telecom minister is a fraud on his constitutional oath. Similarly, when assuming office, a judge of the SC solemnly affirms he will bear true faith and allegiance to the Constitution, perform the duties of his office without fear or favour, affection or ill-will and uphold the Constitution and the laws. A judge’s duty is to punish the offender - doubly punish those who have a constitutional duty.


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Re: Indian Criminal Justice System reform

Postby chaanakya » 14 Aug 2015 21:12

Real face of Judiciary is becoming evident where rubber meets the road.

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Re: Indian Criminal Justice System reform

Postby chaanakya » 26 Aug 2015 20:09

SC stays criminal proceeding against Italian marines


NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Wednesday stopped criminal proceeding against two Italian marines till January 13.

The SC stopped proceedings after the Centre said that the government will have to abide by International tribunal's decision to suspend all proceedings in the case.


The court passed the order after the centre contended that an International tribunal has ordered India and Italy not to proceed in the case till it adjudicates the controversy on jurisdiction.


Additional Solicitor General P S Narasimha told a bench headed by Justice A R Dave that govt is bound by the order passed by the tribunal and court should also honour the court.

The court then passed the oder suspending all proceedings againt Marines till January 13 when it would take up the case.

The court however refused to adjourned the matter sine die as pleaded by Marines' counsel.
Italian marines, Massimiliano Latorre and Salvatore Girone, are accused of killing two Kerala fishermen in 2012 after they apparently mistook them for pirates.


In a mixed ruling in the Italian marines' case, a UN tribunal on Monday asked India to stop all legal proceedings against the marines.

READ ALSO: UN tribunal asks India to stop court proceedings in Italian marines case

The International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS) also rejected Italy's demand for provisional release of the two marines. The tribunal asked both countries to submit their initial reports in the case on September 24.


"Italy and India shall both suspend all court proceedings and shall refrain from initiating new ones which might aggravate or extend the dispute submitted to the... arbitral tribunal or might jeopardize or prejudice the carrying out of any decision which the arbitral tribunal may render," the tribunal said.

India said it would abide by the tribunal's decision as a responsible member of the international community and as a party to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).

India, though, said the tribunal rejected both the measures sought by Italy - that India should refrain from taking or enforcing any judicial or administrative measures against the marines and from exercising any form of jurisdiction over the incident; and also for the return of Girone to Italy and continued stay of Latorre in Italy throughout the proceedings of the tribunal.

"While we are studying the judgment in detail, it is clear that the tribunal did not consider the two provisional measures sought by Italy to be appropriate as that would have pre-judged the merits of the case and would not have equally preserved the rights of both parties until the constitution of the Annex VII Tribunal under UNCLOS, which will decide the issue of jurisdiction," India said in a statement.

"The tribunal has instead prescribed a provisional measure in which both Italy and India should suspend all court proceedings and shall refrain from initiating new ones which might aggravate or extend the dispute submitted to Annex VII Tribunal or prejudice its decision on jurisdiction," it added.

The 21-member UN-mandated court located in Hamburg issued the order with 15 in favour and six against.

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Re: Indian Criminal Justice System reform

Postby Haresh » 29 Aug 2015 15:09

Is there any truth to this article?

It is making the rounds in the UK media and on the general internet.

"Indian sisters told they will be repeatedly gang-raped as punishment for their brother's crime launch appeal at Supreme Court"

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/ho ... 76581.html

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Re: Indian Criminal Justice System reform

Postby Haresh » 25 Sep 2015 13:17

The prisoners fighting wildfires in California
By Vanessa Barford BBC News, Los Angeles

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-34285658

Are prisoners in India offered the chance of doing any sort of work?
Tree planting, river/city cleaning etc

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Re: Indian Criminal Justice System reform

Postby Sachin » 28 Sep 2015 13:32

Haresh wrote:Are prisoners in India offered the chance of doing any sort of work?
Tree planting, river/city cleaning etc

Again Prisons (and thus reforms) are generally a state subject in India. A few things which I have noticed in Kerala.
1. Rigorous imprisonment means, prisoners doing some physical work. But the typical (movie-scene like..), working on old devices to grind grains, or crush seeds to get oil seems to have faded out. But a bit of farming, carpentry etc. is done. They get paid some wages, but it would be always below the levels a free man doing the same job gets. In some places prisoner gangs are taken outside the main prison walls for manual labour, but would work in the immediate vicinity only.
2. There are two "open" prisons in Kerala, one at Trivandrum and another at Kannur. Modelled on a similar experiment done at a prison in Atpadi Tehsil, MH (see the old Hindi movie Do Ankhen Baarah haath), these open prisons have large open spaces and focus on farming. They generally have far more relaxed environment and "locking up" of prisoners is generally not done, or only done for the minimum time required. The prisoners sent here would be vetted thoroughly, and most likely during the last stages of them completing their prison sentences.
3. During the last 5-6 years every major prison have started "catering" in all earnest. The prisoner's make special food items (like Biryani etc.) and these are sold to the general population, right outside the prison walls. They have started small retail outlets, and a couple of wardens and trusted prisoners run the show. The income earned is also given as wages to the prisoners who cook the food. The quality of the food is said to be good, and the rates are also cheaper than those charged by hotels.

The wages earned, some %-age of it is given to the prisoners on a weekly/monthly basis, using which they can buy some stuff (which is allowed inside a prison). The remaining is handed over to them, when they leave the prison after serving their sentences. There are strict guide lines when it comes to chaining up prisoners etc. So a US style "chain gang", or large number of prisoners wearing suits labelled "PRISONER" etc. is not seen in India.

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Re: Indian Criminal Justice System reform

Postby chaanakya » 29 Sep 2015 01:19

Prisons in India have a variety of works which a prisoner can do depending on his aptitude and quality. It ranges from teaching, office work, helping wardens, dispensaries, teaching, workshops ( blacksmith, carpentry, tailoring, carpet, mat weaving), agriculture and gardening, kitchen, food canteen, producing bakery items. All this depends on availability of resources. RI just means that a convict( not the undertrials) has to compulsorily work in some area . Wages, again , vary from state to state and type of work Jails like Puzhal and Tihar has very good system of getting producing and remunerative work and prisoners share in profit besides approved wages as decided by the Govt. Now the wages are apportioned and full amount is not disbursed to prisoners. Ratio varies but part of it up to 20% goes towards prison upkeep or workshop fund, abt 40 goes to Victim compensation fund and Prisoners' welfare fund. Remaining amount is credited to prisoners account. Whatever balance is in the account, of that he can use a % up to 40% for his requirement and other 405 he can send to his family. Balance is kept in reserve. If Jails impose any fine for some violation , it is generally recovered from this balance.

The pattern and guidelines are broadly on above line. Wages may differ widely from 20 to 250+ per day of work incl profit sharing. prisons are supposed to produce their own vegetables and only balance might be purchased from outside. Some do others don't.
Its good idea to follow minimum wages fixed by Govt or give according to work requirement and skill level as ultimately he gets to retain less amount but low wages demotivates and it is difficult for warders to extract work and control the gang or workers.

Outside prison labours are not allowed except with express approval of govt and that too as an exception. I am not much aware of exceptions if any.

Prison Uniform is again simple , plain white kurta pyjama/Shorts/Half pants sort of thing with numbers written. I am not sure if any other color is used.Stripes are out of fashion. not used. No prisoner is chained. he may be isolated but rarely due to SC directives. High Security prisoners are kept isolated from normal prisoners.

there is elaborate system of prisoners' classification. But sometimes it is difficult to follow by prison administration.

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Re: Indian Criminal Justice System reform

Postby Sachin » 29 Sep 2015 10:29

chaanakya wrote:Its good idea to follow minimum wages fixed by Govt or give according to work requirement and skill level as ultimately he gets to retain less amount but low wages demotivates and it is difficult for warders to extract work and control the gang or workers.

A reason I heard for keeping the prison wages lesser than the minimum wage is to discourage people from landing up in jails to get work :lol:. There should be some demotivation/differntiation factor so that there would be some meaning to serving a prison sentence. Many jails now have good food, some facilities like TVs etc., and the conditions have improved a lot.

Outside prison labours are not allowed except with express approval of govt and that too as an exception. I am not much aware of exceptions if any.

I don't know if it is true. But have heard a story that the Vidhan Soudha building at Bengaluru was built using prison labour.

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Re: Indian Criminal Justice System reform

Postby Haresh » 29 Sep 2015 10:44

I have just found the wibsite for the Tihar Jail shop.
Very impressive.
http://tihartj.nic.in/

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Re: Indian Criminal Justice System reform

Postby chaanakya » 29 Sep 2015 11:15

Sachin wrote:
A reason I heard for keeping the prison wages lesser than the minimum wage is to discourage people from landing up in jails to get work :lol:. There should be some demotivation/differntiation factor so that there would be some meaning to serving a prison sentence. Many jails now have good food, some facilities like TVs etc., and the conditions have improved a lot.


I think you missed the point about more than half of the wages go towards prison upkeep/Materials procurement , Victim compensation fund and prisoners' welfare fund. They are allowed to use only part of what they are permitted to retain. Moreover they can send wages back to home. Imagine a situation where a convict , being sole earner, somehow lands into jail , the family would suffer hardship. These provide incentive to prisoners to work hard and send money back home. Prisons are not only incarceration centre but reformation centre as well. One doesn't want released prisoners to lapse into crime again.( barring habitual and professional one). While working and earning they are also paying to victims of the crimes. And yes conditions have improved a lot. Puzhal Jail has tailoring unit and bakery unit which could be easily the best. And prisoners take pride in their works. One MBA fellow was arrested because his uncle hid in his house ( fellow claimed he didn't know). Sentenced to 10 years.Lodged in Tihar . He manages the canteen/bakery unit etc and provides accounting and managerial services. Decent chap, not a criminal in the ordinary sense of the word.



I don't know if it is true. But have heard a story that the Vidhan Soudha building at Bengaluru was built using prison labour.

Well Govt would have permitted in those cases. Prison manuals don't allow outside labour. Britishers and Japanese used prison labour for building roads, bridges etc. Not any more.HCs would come down pretty hard.

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Re: Indian Criminal Justice System reform

Postby Sachin » 29 Sep 2015 13:54

chaanakya wrote:These provide incentive to prisoners to work hard and send money back home. Prisons are not only incarceration centre but reformation centre as well

I feel Tihar under Kiran Bedi pioneered the reforms in prison measures, which IMHO is good. From what I could glean from the media, and books Jails generally have two types of prisoners. One timers who are sentenced for one major crime; generally done at the spur of the moment. These fellows it seems generally repent for the rest of their lives, and it is usually these folks who are willing to work hard and wish to spring back to their lives. Many of the reform measures should be targetted for them. Then there are the Habitual criminals for whom jail is a home away from home. I have read the bio-graphy of a career thief in Kerala (who even had chances of becoming an MLA in Karnataka), and in that he clearly tells that for thiefs and other habitual criminals jails are nothing but a good house of education (to commit more better crimes). I also had a chance to visit the "open prison" at Thiruvananthapuram as part of a camp. Did met two young men (in their late 30s) who were serving life sentences for murdering a rival political activist. Also heard from them at a Roman Catholic priest who murdered a choir girl with whom he had a solid love affair, is lodged in this prison. The priest had become a recluse. The same prison also saw the arrival of a Dy.SP rank police officer accused for murdering his wife's paramour. The chap now helps other prisoners file all legal documents, affidavits, pleas etc.

The victim compensation fund seems to be an interesting concept. Need to check if that exists in Kerala. Very often courts impose a financial penalty along with a jail term. The jail term gets extended if the financial penalty is not paid. Always wondered who actually paid the penalty.

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Re: Indian Criminal Justice System reform

Postby chaanakya » 29 Sep 2015 18:40

Sachin wrote:
chaanakya wrote:These provide incentive to prisoners to work hard and send money back home. Prisons are not only incarceration centre but reformation centre as well

I feel Tihar under Kiran Bedi pioneered the reforms in prison measures, which IMHO is good. From what I could glean from the media, and books Jails generally have two types of prisoners. One timers who are sentenced for one major crime; generally done at the spur of the moment. These fellows it seems generally repent for the rest of their lives, and it is usually these folks who are willing to work hard and wish to spring back to their lives. Many of the reform measures should be targetted for them. Then there are the Habitual criminals for whom jail is a home away from home. I have read the bio-graphy of a career thief in Kerala (who even had chances of becoming an MLA in Karnataka), and in that he clearly tells that for thiefs and other habitual criminals jails are nothing but a good house of education (to commit more better crimes). I also had a chance to visit the "open prison" at Thiruvananthapuram as part of a camp. Did met two young men (in their late 30s) who were serving life sentences for murdering a rival political activist. Also heard from them at a Roman Catholic priest who murdered a choir girl with whom he had a solid love affair, is lodged in this prison. The priest had become a recluse. The same prison also saw the arrival of a Dy.SP rank police officer accused for murdering his wife's paramour. The chap now helps other prisoners file all legal documents, affidavits, pleas etc.

The victim compensation fund seems to be an interesting concept. Need to check if that exists in Kerala. Very often courts impose a financial penalty along with a jail term. The jail term gets extended if the financial penalty is not paid. Always wondered who actually paid the penalty.


Prisoners are classified, as you pointed out, according to the nature of crimes, age and conviction.

1. habitual
2.casual
3.Adolescent ( below 21 years)
4.Adult
5.Civil
6.Military
7.Remand or undertrials
8.Convicts.
9.Women Prisoners
10.Drug Addicts
11."political"prisoners
12.Lifers/Long term imprisonment for murder convicts
13.Other than murder convicts
14.Other than lifers/long term ( two years and less and more than two years and less than 10 years)
15.Good Conduct Prisoners
16.Convict with Prison offenses
17.Psychiatric prisoners( should be sent to Hospital for mental health)
18.High Security Prisoners
19.Prisoners of terror related crimes
20.Foreigners
21 Convicts with death sentence.

Kiran Bedi did lot of work to change the image of TJ. Her successors carried forward the work.

VCF is mandatory but since State Govt pays for victims if any compensation is awarded, sometimes separate fund is not set up.
TN has one. Kerala has one and it is known as Victim Rehabilitation Fund >>http://www.swd.kerala.gov.in/index.php/prisoners

Fines imposed on Prisoners are paid by prisoners, family or friends. Sometimes from the wages . Some welfare organisations do pay .


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