The AAP government today informed the Delhi High Court that they were amending prison manual to bring in basic uniformity in rules and regulations governing the administration of prisons and management of prisoners in Tihar Jail here.
A bench of Acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice C Hari Shankar was also told that the safety and reformation of women prisoners was of utmost importance for the prison administration.
“Health of women prisoners has also been recognised as a focus area warranting special attention,” Delhi government’s standing counsel (Criminal) Rahul Mehra submitted.
He also contended that they have considered semi-open and open cells for women prisoners in Tihar Jail.
Mehra said the new manual for Tihar will completely change the present one, as they were also going to re-visit the parole and furlough guidelines.
He hinted that the new manual might have “legal literacy classes in prisons”.
The Delhi government’s submissions came on a batch of PILs highlighting violation of human rights and poor condition of inmates, besides excluding female prisoners from the semi-open and open prisons.
The PILs have also claimed poor medical facilities to the prisoners.
An order restricting lawyers from meeting their undertrial clients in Tihar to once a week has also been challenged in the high court.
Claiming that legal access had been unlawfully restricted to one legal interview per week, advocate Amit Sahni sought to quash a February 2013 order, under which lawyers are not allowed to meet their clients more than once a week.
The court has now fixed the matter for February 20 next year.