Cabinet approves scheme for freeing prisoners

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New Delhi, July 18 (IANS) The Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved a remission scheme for certain categories of prisoners, including women, transgender, and physically disabled, under which they will be set free on satisfying the given criteria.

The scheme will cover those women and transgenders who have crossed age of 55 years, and men over 60 years of age, given they have served 50 per cent of their total sentence, Law and Justice Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad told reporters here after the cabinet meeting.

Prisoners with over 70 per cent disability and who have served 50 per cent of their sentence will also be covered under the scheme– irrespective of their age. Terminally ill prisoners are also under consideration, the Minister said.

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Prasad said that the decision was taken to commemorate Mahatma Gandhi’s 150th birth anniversary, falling next year.

The scheme, however, was conditional and those convicted of murder, acts of terrorism, kidnapping for ransom, rape and dowry death will not be covered.

Also, those booked under Terrorist and Disruptive Activities (TADA) Act, Prevention of Terrorism Act (POTA), Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO), and those serving death and life sentences will not be covered under the scheme, he said.

–IANS

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