The national lockdown enforced due to the coronavirus outbreak has prevented the families from meeting the imprisoned activists.
A couple of weeks ago, Koel Sen received a call from a constable at the Byculla Jail in Mumbai, informing her that the facility to meet prisoners would be suspended soon, in view of the coronavirus outbreak in India. Read more
Varavara Rao, Shoma Sen file for bail on medical grounds citing coronavirus outbreak
Others seek directions to jail authorities for permission to talk on phone since prison visits are stopped.
Citing the spread of coronavirus, poet P Varavara Rao and retired professor Shoma Sen, among the nine persons accused in the Elgaar Parishad case, have sought temporary bail on medical grounds from a special court. The court Monday heard the arguments on their bail pleas. An order in the matter is likely to be passed Tuesday. Read more
ACTIVISTS SAY THEY ARE VULNERABLE TO COVID-19
Mumbai Mirror / by David Delima
While Varavara Rao says he has respiratory problems, Shoma Sen says she has high blood pressure; a special court to pass order today … Activist and lawyer Sudha Bhardwaj, who has been in jail since August 2018, had also filed an application for bail, but the National Investigation Agency stated it had not received a copy of her application. Read more
Release Those Charged Under Serious Offences – 130 Lawyers Make Recommendations [Read Letter]
A total of 130 lawyers have written to the Chief Minister of Maharashtra, State Home Minister and Chief Justice of Bombay High Court expressing grave concern regarding the safety of “thousands of individuals incarcerated in prisons and other settings of detention such as observation homes, special homes, children homes, detention centers, borstal homes, etc” in the midst of the Coronavirus pandemic. Read more
MHARASHTRA PRISONERS RELEASED SAYS JAIL UNPREPARED TO HANDLE COVID-19 PANDEMIC
The Wire / by Sukanya Shantha
No transport has been arranged for those who are released, while inmates still in prison fear for their health.
Mumbai: Even as the Maharashtra state government has slowly begun releasing incarcerated persons on parole and interim bail as a safeguard against the spread of the coronavirus pandemic, fear and desperation has gripped those languishing in the jail. Read more
“COVID-19 outbreak an occasion to look at overcrowded prisons in country.”
A group of activists and intellectuals has sought bail or parole for political prisoners lodged in various jails.
In a letter to the Central and State governments, eminent persons such as writers Arundhati Roy, K. Satchidanandan and Meena Kandasamy, journalist B.R.P. Bhaskar and academics Dilip Menon and Benjamin Zachariah pointed out that the COVID-19 outbreak was also an occasion to look at the overcrowded prisons in the country. Read more
INTELLECTUALS APPEAL FOR RELEASE OF PRISONERS
Kashimr Times / by KT News Service
New Delhi: About two dozen intellectuals, writers and academics of the country have made an urgent appeal to the government to ease the over-crowded prisons in view of the outbreak of Covid19 and also in keeping with the recent Supreme Court directive. They have sought release on bail or parole of at least some of the prisoners including political detenues from across the country. Read more
ACADEMICS SEND OPEN LETTER SEEKING BAIL FOR VARAVARA RAO, SUDHA BHARADWAJ
The New Indian Express / by Prajanma Das
The Supreme Court has already directed the state governments to consider granting bail to remand prisoners, accused of committing crimes punishable with a maximum of seven years imprisonment.
Former Delhi University Professor GN Saibaba, Poet Varavara Rao, Dr Shoma Sen, Sudha Bharadwaj and several others including Padma and Veeramony in Tamil Nadu are in prison — either awaiting trial or are political prisoners of the state. Read more
COVID-19: Set Up Panel to Consider Release of Prisoners on Parole, says SC to States, Uts
The apex court said the prisoners convicted of or charged with offences having jail term of up to seven years can be given parole to decongest jails.
New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday directed all states and Union Territories to set up high-level committees to determine the class of prisoners who could be released on parole for four to six weeks to avoid overcrowding in jails so as to safeguard against the spread of the coronavirus pandemic. Read more
Arun Ferreira: Our situation worse after NIA took over case
Says they’re holed up in Taloja jail barracks with no space even for chargesheets.
Mumbai: Activist Arun Ferreira, an accused in the Elgar Parishad case, told a National Investigation Agency (NIA) special court that the situation (of the accused) has worsened after NIA took over the case. Read more
Rona Wilson’s hard disk contained malware that allowed remote access
The Caravan / by Martand Kaushik and Anjeneya Sivan
On 17 April 2018, the Pune Police raided the Delhi home of Rona Wilson, a noted prison-rights activist, and arrested him for his alleged role in the violence at the Bhima Koregaon memorial in January that year. A few months later, the police claimed that it had found a letter on the hard disk of Wilson’s computer that contained details of a “naxal” plot to assassinate Prime Minister Narendra Modi and “overthrow the government.” Read more
Poor Medical Care for Prisoners Explains Why Number of Custodial Deaths Is Only Rising
In 2018, 1,845 people died while incarcerated. That’s the highest number India has seen so far.
Mumbai: “I would see this one prison inmate being brought to the hospital every day for an entire week, and each time turned away. The escort police would invariably walk in around 2:30-3 pm, over an hour after the OPD (out-patient department) hours, and no doctor would be available to treat patients then. The inmate went untreated for over a week,” recalls a young doctor at Maharashtra’s state-run JJ hospital. Read more
Letters from jail: Elgaar Parishad detainees pen thoughts and experiences
The letters, which The Indian Express has access to, reveal a slice of their lives behind bars. Some talk about when they can possibly see the gallows, some are abstract ruminations on life and freedom, while some dwell on the circumstances of their arrest and merits of the case. Read more
Elgar Parishad case accused VV Rao, 82, hospitalised in Pune before hearing
He was discharged on Wednesday evening.
Varavara Rao, 82, an accused in the Elgar Parishad case, has been hospitalised on Wednesday when he was scheduled for a hearing in the case.
As per protocol, the accused are brought to a lock-up at the Shivajinagar district court premises and then brought to the specific court they are scheduled to appear in. Read more