New Delhi, Oct 12 (IENews) As part of commemoration of the 150th Birth Anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, the Union Cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, on July 18, 2018 decided that special remission to specific category of prisoners may be given and they may be released from prisons in three phases (on 2nd October 2018, 6th April 2019 and 2nd October, 2019).
In the week long First phase of special remission to prisoners, the States and UTs, after obtaining the approval of the competent authority in their jurisdictions, have released over 900 prisoners. In the Second and Third Phase, prisoners will be released on 6th April, 2019 and 2nd October, 2019 respectively.
The States and UTs have been advised to hold weeklong special functions in all prison premises based on the teachings of Mahatma Gandhi before the dates specified for release of prisoners. The prisoners shall be taken to the statue of Mahatma Gandhi where they will garland the same. While releasing the prisoners, they will also be gifted with books relating to Mahatma Gandhi and will also be provided suitable counselling.
The following categories of prisoners are eligible for special remission:
(a) Women convicts of 55 years of age and above, who have completed 50% of their actual sentence period.
(b) Transgender convicts of 55 years of age and above, who have completed 50% of their actual sentence period.
(c) Male convicts of 60 years of age and above, who have completed 50% of their actual sentence period.
(d) Physically challenged/disabled convicts with 70% disability and more who have completed 50% of their actual sentence period.
(e) Terminally ill convicts.
(f) Convicted prisoners who have completed two-third (66%) of their actual sentence period.
Special remission scheme is not available to prisoners who have been convicted for an offence for which the sentence awarded is death or where death sentence has been commuted to life imprisonment; Cases of convicts involved in serious and heinous crimes like Dowry death, Rape, Human Trafficking and convicted under POTA, UAPA, TADA, FICN, POCSO Act, Money Laundering, FEMA, NDPS, Prevention of Corruption Act, etc.