New Delhi (The Hawk): A commission to investigate the country's current parole and remission laws has been established by the Delhi Commission for Women (DCW). The Commission will research the relevant laws and regulations of the several states that govern the remission and parole of criminal sentences.
The DCW has also sent notifications to the Delhi government and Tihar Jail in this regard, requesting information about the remission and parole policies for criminals convicted of heinous crimes and how they are being applied in Delhi. Both the Union government and the Delhi administration will receive the report from the Commission.
The Commission has requested information about prisoners who have been granted remission since 2012 and were sentenced to life in prison for rape, gangrape, POCSO, and rape with murder. The notice was submitted to the Delhi government's Home Department. Since 2012, the Commission has also requested copies of the Sentence Review Board's meeting minutes and the departmental recommendations on whether to release a criminal.
The Commission has also requested information on heinous crime defendants who have received parole or furlough since 2018 as well as information on defendants who have overstayed their parole or furlough. The Home Department and Tihar Jail have been asked by the Commission to produce the necessary information no later than November 21 of this year.
In light of recent cases that have revealed systemic flaws that permit high-profile prisoners to use these policies for their own gain, the Commission established this investigation, according to a statement from DCW.
It was also mentioned that Bilkis Bano's three-year-old kid and seven other family members were killed after she was gang-raped in 2002. The Gujarat government released the 11 convicts on August 15 despite the court having sentenced them to life in prison, citing the 1992 remission policy that permitted inmates to request a reduction in their term.
Dera Sacha Sauda Chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim, who was convicted of rapes and murder and is currently serving a life sentence in a Rohtak prison, was recently released on parole by the Haryana government. After that, it claimed, he conducted multiple "Pravachan Sabhas" and created music videos to promote himself, both of which attracted several prominent government officials.
Swati Maliwal, the head of DCW, described these occurrences as "very troubling" and claimed that the nation's current laws and procedures regarding remission, parole, and even furlough are incredibly lax and readily abused by politicians and criminals for their personal gain.
If powerful individuals with access to political influence can obtain improper benefits while serving life sentences for horrible crimes against women and children, justice is obviously denied, and any government efforts to ensure the protection of women and children are rendered completely pointless. I have asked the authorities for information on their parole and remission procedures," Maliwal added.
(Inputs from Agencies)