2 November, 2006
The Kerala High Court has directed the state police to release all undertrial prisoners, who have been in custody for periods exceeding the maximum imprisonment prescribed for the offences allegedly committed by them.
A Division Bench consisting Chief Justice V K Bali and Justice P R Raman also directed the police to produce before magistrates or sessions courts, all those undertrial prisoners, whose custody had exceeded half the prescribed punishment period.
The undertrials will be released on a bond by the lower courts, the High Court said.
Director General of Prosecution P G Thambi informed the court that there were 109 undertrial prisoners in various jails in Kerala, whose custody had exceeded the maximum prescribed punishment.
Mr Thambi made the submission following a direction from the court yesterday to give details about the undertrial prisoners in the state. The court gave the direction while hearing a matter referred to it from a single judge.
Justice K Hema of the Court had in a suo motu proceedings earlier directed the police to find out the number of undertrial prisoners, whose custody had exceeded the maximum prescribed punishment period.
Later, the case was referred to the Division Bench.