Tihar to release 3,000 inmates to decongest prison amid coronavirus outbreak

Tihar Jail authorities have said that they have decided to release about 3,000 prisoners to decongest the prison to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus infections as the number of cases across the country increases.

Tihar Prisons Director General said the inmates will be released in the next 3-4 days. While 1500 of them are convicts who will be released on parole or furlough, the other half are undertrials who will be released on interim bail. The decision was taken after the Delhi government told the High Court it has decided to decongest the prison to check the spread of coronavirus by providing convicts with the options of special parole and furlough. A bench of Justices Hima Kohli and Subramonium Prasad was told that the Arvind Kejriwal government was going to amend its prison rules to provide the options of special parole and furlough.

In a submission before the bench, Delhi government’s Additional Standing Counsel Anuj Aggarwal said a notification regarding amendments to the prison rules would be issued soon. The reply from the AAP government was filed during the hearing on a plea seeking decongestion of the prisons in view of the coronavirus pandemic.