Undertrials and Media

Media does not accord priority to the undertrials that they deserve.

Undertrials are those prisoners behind bars who, in the eyes of law, are yet to be convicted by the absolute final judgement, and they pass their days with suspense and expectations like light and shadow in their minds.

Prison is a State subject in the Constitution of India. States have to spend Rs. 55 per day per under trial in detention. At this rate, the States incurs more than Rs. 461 crores annually on undertrials.

According to the official classification of Undertrials as per the length of stay in Tihar Jail as on 30th April 2007, there are 10698 male undertrials and 387 female undertrials. This means a total of 11085 undertrials are in Tihar jail.

As per the same classification of Convict Prisoners as per term of imprisonment as on 30th April 2007, there are 2377 male convicts and 74 female convicts. The total number of convicts is 2451.

Tihar Jail Complex in New Delhi is one of the largest prison complexes in the world. It comprises of nine prisons in the Tihar Complex with a total population of around 13,000 prisoners against a sanction capacity of 4800 prisoners.

One District Jail at Rohini with a total Population of around 1800 prisoners against a sanction capacity of 1050 prisoners.

In a year about 70,000-80,000 prisoners remain lodged in these prisons for different duration.

This prison population has about 80% undertrials and includes about 520 women prisoners with about 41 children below 4 years of age dependent upon them.

Of the undertrials, a huge number has been in jail for several years. This is because of delays in the justice delivery system.

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