VARANASI: The coming Independence Day may bring freedom to 61 prisoners of Varanasi Central Jail, especially
those who had been sentenced life term and have served a certain portion of that period as the proposal for remission had already been forwarded to the state government by the jail authorities in this regard. This list was prepared by the jail administration after the state government issued its revised GO recently, senior superintendent, Varanasi Central Jail, Sanjeev Tripathi said while talking to TOI. Before the state government had revised the GO for remission to the prisoners in the state, the prison department was following the guideline of selecting the names of only those prisoners who had attained 60 years and spent 16 years in the jail. The initial list of 35 prisoners was prepared on the basis of the same guideline, Tripathi said. But, recently the state government amended its GO and new guidelines were prescribed. No change was made in the age limit but the period of imprisonment was reduced to 14 years from 16. With the receiving of new guidelines of the state government, the jail administration started fresh exercise after which 25 more names were included in the list of prisoners to be freed. But, keeping the past incidents, when some controversy had been generated on the issue of remission and the jail authorities as well as police had to bring many released prisoners back to jail in the state, the state government had also prescribed certain provisions. Tripathi said that beneficiaries for remission had to be selected after ensuring that he/she had not remained in heinous crime or he/she is not a habitual criminal. In order to ensure that the prisoners selected for remission are fulfilling the norms prescribed in the guidelines, the jail authorities exercised hard to collect the complete crime history of the prisoners. After this exercise, the name of one prisoner was removed from the list of 60 as he was convicted for raping a minor girl while name of one more prisoner was removed as he was found in the category of habitual criminal. A list of applications in which there were age related disputes, was also compiled and medical board constituted for age verification.
After this, the name of three more prisoners was included in the final list forwarded to the state government. If the names included in this list of central jail authorities are considered by the state government and chief minister Akhilesh Yadav announced their remission, some load of prisoners especially in above 60 years age category would reduced in this overcrowded jail. T