"Prison reforms is process to change old systems, with the goals of
rehabilitation by the way of change criminals into law binding citizen."-- Hinesh Rathod
There is no society without crime and criminal. Punishing the offender is
primary function of civil society. Therefore, the objective of punishment can be
achieved by imprisonment.
In many cases, prisoners come out jail as hardened criminal more than as
Therefore, we needed to change in entire systems such as old tradition,
management activity, amenities system, and behavior of prison officers.
Why Prison Reforms is important?
There are many reasons for Prison reforms lets understand them in points:
Problem in India Prison: Prison overcrowding is one of the key contributions for poor prison
condition, prolonged detention of under trial prisoners, inadequate of
social and rehabilitation program, lack of legal aid availability for
marginalized prisoner, lack of manpower and poor training, corruption, poor
healthcare and welfare amenities, inhuman approach of prison staff among
- The Bhagalpur (State of Bihar) refer to series incidents in India when police
blinded 31 individuals under trial prisoners by pouring acid into their eyes.
- On the 23rd 2017, a prison inmate, was brutally sexually assaulted to
death reportedly by prison staff at Mumbai's Byculla jail.
Some of the prominent recommendation of Mulla committee are:
- Improving prison condition by making available proper food, clothing,
- The focus must be on human rights of prisoners besides improving their
- Undertrial in jails to be reduced to bare minimum and they be kept away from
- The prison staff to be properly trained and organized.
- The focus must be on Rehabilitation and reforming of offender.
- The Government should make an effort to provide adequate financial
(The Mulla Committee)
Woman Prisoners:There should be necessary provision to restore the dignity of woman even if
convicted under criminal code. Therefore, all prison officers should be woman in
case of woman offender. (The Krishna Iyer Committee)
Open Prisons: (Open Prison System is a game changer)The concept of open prisons to provide better opportunity for reforming
offender. There are no bars no uniforms. Prisoners go out for daily work like
normal people do from their homes and return at the end of the day. Hence, we
have to adopt this policy for pan India level. (5th National Conference on
Prison Reforms 2016)
Law / Supreme Court ruling in protection of Prisoners Rights
- In Hussainara Khatoon V. State of Bihar, The Supreme Court held that the
detention of these prisoners was illegal as it completely violated the
fundamental Right to Life and Liberty under Article 21 of Indian Constitution.
- Charles Sabraj V. The Suptd., Central Tihar Jail 1978
- Opined that imprisonment does not spell farewell to Fundamental rights.
- Overcrowded Jails are a Violated of Human rights of prisoner guaranteed
under article 21 of Indian Constitution
- In the case Katar Singh V. State of Punjab, it was declared that right to
speedy trials is an essential part of Fundamental right to life and liberty.
- Article 14 (3)(C) of The International Covenant on Civil and Political
Rights (ICCPR), state that an accused has right to tried without undue delay.
International View on Prison Reforms:
- The United Nation Standard minimum rules for the treatment of Prisoners
(The Nelson Mandela Rules)
The Rules are based on obligations to treat all prisoners with respect for their
inherent dignity and values as human benign, and to prohibit torture and others
forms of ill- treatment.
- The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR)
Through various bodies have studies the problems of prison in India and law are
made for improving in jail condition, it is a fact that many problems plague our
The mindset of prison staff must change. The management of prison must be marked
by discipline and due regards to human rights of prisoners.
Prison reform is not just about prison building, but what goes on inside them
that needs to be changed.
The focus must be on human rights of prisoners besides improving their
Bibliography / Reference:
Award Winning Article Is Written By: Mr.Hinesh Navratan Rathod
Authentication No: AU222780645996-15-0822