Release of convicts challenged by social worker

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Chennai, Sept 17 (UNI) The premature release of 1,045 life convicts by the Tamil Nadu government, on September 15, on the occasion of the birth centenary of former Chief Minister C N Annadurai, has been challenged in Madras High court.

Mr Delhi Babu, a social worker has filed the petition, which is yet to be numbered and likely to come up for hearing in a couple of days.

The petitioner said as per the Supreme court orders, life convicts must serve their life term in prison and the premature release amounted to violating the apex court order.

The state government had been following a convention of releasing only those who had completed 14 years of imprisonment but this time, the convicts, who had just completed five years and seven years have been released, he said.

This was arbitrary and violative of the constitution, criminal procedure code and jail manuals, the petiioner said and contended that the government order was liable to be set aside.

He said the affected families were under the grip of fear and threat following the release of the convicts. In some cases, the family members of the convicts themselves, did not like they being released, the petitioner submitted.

The High Court had already declined to stay the release of the life convicts on a petition filed by Janata Party President Dr Subramanian Swamy, but made it clear that if the petitioner won his case, the release would be cancelled.

UNI XR/WS VV RL KN1959

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