COVID-19: 3481 Prisoners Released Across Odisha In 27 Days

Bhubaneswar: The Odisha Government has released 3,481 prisoners in between March 20 and April 15 to decongest the jails across the State amidst coronavirus scare. With the temporary release of the prisoners, the present population of inmates in the jails is 17,028 against the scheduled strength of 19,022.

Such a step was taken based on the decision of a high-power committee constituted on the recommendation of the Supreme Court. The committee identified inmates who had already spent more than five years without trial or convicts who have served at least five years’ sentence.

Earlier on March 23, an apex court bench presided over by Chief Justice S A Bobde had directed all the states to constitute a high power committee to identify the inmates who can be released on bail or parole.

“Looking into the possible threat of transmission and fatal consequences, it is necessary that prisons must ensure maximum possible distancing among the prisoners including undertrials,” the bench said, in a Suo Motu matter.