The High Court of Kerala quashed a 2011 order of the Kerala government which ordered the premature release of 209 prisoners who had completed 10 or more years in jail by that time. The full bench of the High Court comprising Chief Justice Hrishikesh Roy, Justice K. Abraham Mathew, and Justice AK Jayasankaran Nambiar also directed that the proposal for premature release of 209 Prisoners shall be scrutinized again within a period of next 6 months.
The LDF government of Kerala, using its powers under Article161 of the Constitution, had ordered the release of 209 prisoners who had completed 10 or more years in jail. This decision of the government was challenged by way of multiple writ petitions.
During the proceedings, HC called for the documents which were used by the government to arrive at the decision. HC examined the documents and found that the jails were getting overcrowded and it was putting a lot of pressure on the state exchequer. The state government felt that no purpose was carried out by keeping the prisoners who have completed 10 years in jail when they have been reformed and no danger to society was probable.
The HC said the government’s decision is hit by section 433A of the Criminal Procedure Code. It says that no person convicted for murder and sentenced to death or life imprisonment shall be released from the jail before the completion of at least 14 years of imprisonment. The Court said that while exercising powers under Article 161, governor cannot ignore the provisions of the section 433A which is also a part of law of the land.
Tags : #Premature #Release #Prisoners #Kerala #HC #Order #Quashes