Custodial Violence – the worst crime in a civilized society.

In our daily lives, we come across various news about the custodial deaths. Before investigating further about the statistics and the reasons for the same, let’s understand what does the custodial death means.

Custody means the care and protection of a person. There are two types of custody when a person is arrested. i) Police custody ii) Judicial custody.

Police Custody is when the person is arrested, the police are physically in charge of the person arrested. They have the custody of the accused with them and are therefore bound to take care of him until produce before the magistrate. It is actually detaining of a suspect and during this detention, the police officer who is the in charge of the case has the power to interrogate the suspect and this detention shouldn’t be longer than 24 hours. Here, the accused is lodged in a police station lock-up.

Judicial Custody means when the accused is in the custody of the magistrate and is lodged in a jail.

When a police arrest any person, that person must be produced before the magistrate within 24 hours of the arrest. It is then the matter of the magistrate to decide whether the accused would be sent to judicial custody or the time period of his police custody would be extended.

As soon as the police arrest a person Crpc kicks-in. If the accused is juvenile then his age is to be ascertained and if found juvenile then he should be produced before Juvenile Justice Board.

Police can hold the suspect for interrogation only with the permission of the court. In India, Section 167 of Criminal Procedure Code ( Crpc) provides for the provision regarding the custody of the person with police, for a period of 15 days on the order of the magistrate. Police custody may extend only up to a period of 15 days from the date custody begins but judicial custody may extend to a period of 90 days for a crime which entails a punishment of death, life imprisonment or period of imprisonment exceeding 10 years and 60 days for all other crimes if the Magistrate is convinced that sufficient reasons exist, following which the accused or suspect must be released on bail.


It is essential to know about our prisons before exploring the reasons for the judicial deaths. This statistics will provide us the number of jails and the occupants in it which will further help us to determine their living conditions. This statistics will give us in-depth knowledge about our jails and the hurdles faced by the inmates there. These numbers will provide us with various remedies that have to be adopted in order to make it humane for the prisoners.


Central Jails


District Jails


Sub Jails


Women Jails


Open Jails


Borstal Schools


Special Jails


Other Jails





Central jails



District jails



Sub jails



Women jails



Open jails



Borstal schools



Special jails



Other jails





TOTAL NO. OF INMATES IN JAIL AS ON 31/12/2015:4, 19,623


















Convicts:1,34,168 (32.0% of total inmates)



95.7% of total convicts



4.3% of total convicts



Under trials: 2, 82,076 (67.2% of total inmates)



95.8% of total under trials



4.2% of total undertrials



Detenues: 2,562 (0.6% of total inmates)



97.2% of total detenues



2.8% of total detenues



Others: 817 (0.2% of total inmates)



87.0% of total others



13.0% of total others

*Source: Prisons statistics 2015



  • The number of inmates in the jails exceeds the capacity of the jails by a great number. These jails have almost more than a lakh of prisoners than what it can accommodate.


3,66,781< 4,19,623

Thus resulting in overcrowding. This over-crowding in itself gives an idea of the scarce resources available to the inmates.

  • The jails accommodate under trials prisoners of almost 67.2% of total inmates and convicts amount to only 32%. That implies that the people aren’t getting justice. They are serving the term in jails without even pronounced guilty by the courts.

This implies that the prisoners are denied their basic rights, that is, Right to Justice and Right to Speedy Trial.

Right to Speedy Trial is a human right under which it is asserted that a government prosecutor wouldn’t delay the trial arbitrarily and indefinitely.

Justice Krishna Iyer while dealing with the bail petition in Babu Singh v State of UP, remarked “Our justice system even in grave cases suffers from a slow-motion syndrome which is lethal to ‘fair trial’ whatever the ultimate decision. Speedy justice is component of social justice since the community, as a whole, is concerned in the criminal being condignly and finally punished within a reasonable time and the innocent being absolved from the inordinate ordeal of criminal proceedings.”

  • The occupancy rate from 2013 to 2015 has reduced meagrely, although above 100%. This somewhere does imply that the authorities are well aware of the crisis of overcrowding and hence are taking considerable reforms to reduce the occupancy rate. Hopefully, in future, this rate would fall and come under 100%.



“Liberty is the most cherished possession of man.”

A person arrested of any crime and sent to jail is enough punishment for his crime. A person goes to prison as a punishment, not for the punishment. He is entitled to all the rights as the citizen of the country as the person arrested is also a citizen and he is entitled to the protection of life and liberty. Even he is protected under Article 21 of the constitution of India and if any restrictions are to be made it should be according to the same.

Effective enforcement of rights of life and liberty and procedure should be stringently followed while arresting a person. These rights are inherent in our constitution and should be protected. A person can be arrest on mere suspicion but such suspicion must be substantiated by proof. A person so arrested has the right to consult the legal practitioner of his choice.

With all these rights, the biggest right he is entitled to be to live safely in police or judicial custody (as otherwise provided with hang till death punishment). But, sadly our country is witnessing a number of custodial deaths. Either this is because of the torture they are prone to or lack of facilities which are essential to living.

Death of a prisoner in jail has always been a matter of serious concern. It points out the finger on our law and judicial system. The death in judicial custody has been classified into two.

  1. Natural Deaths include mainly deaths due to illness.
  2. Unnatural Deaths include suicide, murder by inmates, death due to firing, death due to negligence or excess by jail personnel etc.

Almost 900 judicial custody deaths were recorded in 2017 in India. the joint registrar (Law) of the National Human Rights Commission, stated that Uttar Pradesh leads the chart of deaths in judicial custody by a significant margin, with 204 deaths recorded in the period between 1 January 2017 and 2 August 2017. The state was followed by Punjab with 76 deaths and Bihar with 64 deaths.

Custodial deaths invoke the criminal liability of the officer in charge and tortious liability of the state. This helps to render adequate justice in such cases.

Below is the 2015 prisons statistics that records the number of deaths in judicial custody in the year 2015. A total of 1,584 prisoners have died in jails both due to natural and unnatural causes. Out of this 1,469 were natural deaths and 115 were due to unnatural causes.

*SOURCE – Prison Statistics 2015



  • From the above data, it is evident that the prisoners are dying mainly due to natural causes. This somewhere implies that the prisoners are not getting the proper treatment due to which they are losing their lives.
  • The next cause of the deaths in the prison is suicide. More than 4% of prisoners are taking their own lives. This may be due to the depression they are facing in the jail. There can be other reasons as well.
  • About 0.7% of prisoners lost their lives in the process of a quarrel among inmates.

The common perception of people about death in judicial custody can be faded away looking at this statistics. Any news about the same fills people’s mind with terror as they are bound to think that all the deaths that occur in the custody are because of torture that is meted down on the inmates.

Well, this is isn’t true.

Suicide is the second cause of deaths in judicial custody. Keeping that in mind NHRC has issued guidelines for ‘Prevention of Suicide in Prison’ which includes:

  • A comprehensive suicide prevention programme that has to be introduced in jails in all prisons by their respective Governments.
  • The state prison directorate should ensure enhancement of constructive and supportive relationships between prison staff and inmates.
  • The newly admitted prisoners should be interviewed by a trained medical officer along with a qualified psychologist for assessing which inmate appears to be psychologically abnormal.
  • CCTVs should be installed at the receptions and monitored 24×7 through the control room.
  • Each prisoner should be provided with the opportunities to participate in constructive activities that will help them build their competence level and address cure depressive tendencies.

These are some of the preventives provided by NHRC to help a prisoner so that he doesn’t consider suicide as an option.


The prison environment is characterized by factors which can have adverse effects on individual inmates. In prison setting crowded conditions are chronic. Overcrowding does have an effect on the prison environment.

  • First, there is less of everything to go around, so the same space and resources are made to stretch even further.  Lack of resources can apply to anything an inmate might use. Lack of resources will have its consequences as they will make the prisoners idle. It will lead to frustration of being denied a resource and competition and conflict over limited resources often leads to aggression and violence.
  • The second effect is on individual behavior of the inmate. Crowding creates stress, fear, and tensions in inmates. This makes them depressed and aggressive. Overcrowding will negatively affect the interaction and social relations of the inmate. This will also lead to less cooperation among the prisoners.
  • Overcrowding harbor illness and unhealthy environment. The prisoners suffer and lose their lives because of this. A prison is a place where the prisoners get a chance to regret, repent and renew themselves but sadly this is not what is provided to the prisoners due to overcrowding as they aren’t only uncomfortable but also destructive as prisoners who come out carrying the consequences of their bad experiences.


There is justifiable anguish over the killing of Sarabjit Singh in a Pakistani jail but what about the thousands of deaths in police and judicial custody in India?

There are a lot of cases of death in judicial custody that is left unheard in this country. Where the Government neither accepted its responsibility nor has it announced compensation to them.

The government was asking a speedy trial to Sarabjit when in return those same politicians do not willingly give to their own citizens. Our own government does not show the same passion for justice when it comes to Indian Custodial deaths.

The accused in custodial death are rarely prosecuted. They are perpetrated by the police and army, whose responsibility is to protect the citizen of this country from crime.

Ram Singh, the bus driver, and one of the accused in the Delhi 16th December 2012, gang rape case died in Tihar Jail in mysterious circumstances on 11th March. Some of the media reports indicated that Ram Singh was assaulted in the jail and he succumbed to the injuries. No inquiry has been taken so far against any officials or inmates for his death.

Ajmal Kasab and Afzal Guru who were convicted in the terror attack in Mumbai on 26th November 2008 and Parliament attack case 2001 respectively, both were executed in secrecy and weren’t even permitted to meet their families prior to execution. Their bodies weren’t returned to their families for the last rituals.

The injustice is meted out on our prisoners. They have equal right of light as same as we do as the citizen of India. The Supreme Court of India in 1974 in the case of D Bhuvan Mohan Patnaik v State of Andhra Pradesh that prisoners are not denuded of their fundamental rights including their right to life, by mere reason of their incarceration.

In the most recent case of Rohatash Kumar v State of Haryana illustrated that custodial death is a clear violation of the prisoner’s right under Article 21 of the constitution and relief should be given by the way of compensation.

The prisoners are also entitled to some of the rights in prisons about which they are uninformed. A proper knowledge about the same should be given to them so that they can access their rights.


There are certain rights that the prisoners are entitled to. NHRC highlights those rights. These includes:

  • The right to life
  • Prohibition on torture
  • Right to a fair trial
  • Freedom from slavery
  • Protection from retrospective laws
  • Many mentally ill persons languish in the prisons and were treated at par with other prisoners. Thus no mentally ill person is permitted to continue his term in jail on 31st October 1998.
  • Prisoners are to be medically examined at the time of admission in jail.
  • Right to speedy trial
  • An undertrial prisoner, if have served half the punishment that would have been awarded to him for the said crime, then he is bound to be released.



Observing the increasing number of deaths in judicial custody in various jails for various reasons, NHRC came up and intervened by giving some guidelines relating to death in custody.

  • NHRC advocated the medical examination of prisoners at the time of entry to the jail as well as periodically. This will facilitate the provision of timely and effective medical treatment to the prisoners with medical problems.
  • A large number of prisoners die due to Tuberculosis in the jail and HIV patients are quite vulnerable to T.B.

A medical proforma for health screening of prisoners on admission to jail is provided by the commission that has to be filled for all the prisoners.

  • The commission had issued a direction to District Magistrate and Superintendents of Police of every district to report the cases of custodial deaths and custodial rapes to the Secretary-General of the Commission about such incidents with 24 hours of occurrence.
  • Failure to report the above incidents promptly would give rise to a presumption that there was an attempt to suppress the incident.
  • After noticing the flaws in the post-mortem reports, the commission issued a guideline that all postmortem examinations were done in respect of death in custody should be video-filmed and cassettes should be sent to the commissions along with post-mortem report.
  • The commission also provided for a model post-mortem report form.
  • The commission has also directed an additional inquest procedure for the proper assessment of ‘Time since Death and the procedure is also given by the commission.
  • The commission has also provided for guidelines regarding conducting of magisterial inquiry in cases of death in custody.


(cases reviewed by NHRC)

1) CASE NO. 898/19/2/2017-JCD


Incident Place – Central Jail, Bathinda

Incident Date – 20/11/2017


Name – Dharam Chand

S/O Gopi Chand


The deceased was an undertrial Prisoner in case FIR No. 119 dated 23/06/2017 aged 37 years during the time of death. He was admitted in this jail on 20/02/2017.  The Undertrial accused was admitted to jail hospital for treatment. He was then referred to Civil Hospital Bathinda on 20/11/2017 as an Emergency Case at 10:05 AM and after 11:00 AM the Medical Officer declared the accused dead.


From the Detail Report, it was revealed that at the time of admission in jail the accused was suffering from Tuberculosis (T.B) since the time of entry in jail and he was under treatment from Civil Hospital, Bathinda and also remained admitted there several times. The patient was also admitted on 26/8/2017 in serious conditions and constantly the follow-ups of his health were taken. The letters from a Senior Medical officer of Central Jail Hospital, Bathinda to Civil Hospital Bathinda, shows that the prisoner was regularly having breathing problems.

A letter dated 04/04/2018 was sent from NHRC reminding the Superintendent of police to send

  1. Post-mortem reports along with CD
  2. The final cause of death based on viscera and histopathological examination report.
  3. Magisterial inquiry report.

The final cause of death was not yet discovered.

As per the Inquiry Report signed by the Inquiry Officer- cum- Chief Judicial Magistrate, Bathinda. It was inferred that the convict Dharam Chand was not meted to any atrocity in jail as per the statements were given by the deceased brother and family. The deceased brother confirms that the deceased was suffering from T.B and the jail authorities provided him with the requisite treatment. The deceased never complained of any inmate or any torture.

The Assistant Superintendent, Central Jail stated that the deceased was suffering from the above disease and he never quarreled with any person or ever complained about any maltreatment given to him by any person. He did state that the deceased was provided with medical facilities regularly due to his ill-health.

The Medical Officer of Central Jail confirmed the deceased’s illness. The Medical Officers of the Civil Hospital who were the members of Board of Doctors conducted the post-mortem examination and after receiving the path report confirmed that the deceased died due to Chronic Lungs disease.

The Court is of the view that there was no lapse and negligence on part of the jail authorities and the deceased Dharam Chand died a Natural Death.

After all the inquiry and verifying the documents NHRC closed the case.


All the witnesses have agreed to the fact that the deceased was suffering from T.B which is the sole reason for his death. He was provided with requisite treatment time to time and there was no sign of torture or misbehavior. None of the family members have suspected any foul play in his death and have agreed to post-mortem reports. Thus with all these evidence, it was best to rest this case as the cause of the death was, at last, resulted to Natural Death only.

During scrutinizing the file, there were prescriptions indicating the deceased’s regular visit to the hospital for the treatment of his chronic disease. On some of those prescriptions, the age of the deceased was wrongly written. The deceased was of 37 years old when he died then how can his age be written as 39 or 65 years on prescriptions?

Also, there were constant reminders given for the required reports that have to be submitted to NHRC after reporting a case of judicial deaths. The authorities took a considerable amount of time for producing the required documents.


2) CASE NO. 1175/35/6/2017-JCD


Incident place- District Jail, Haridwar

Incident date – 18/09/2017


Name- Murarilal Upadhyay

S/O Ram Singh Upadhyay

The deceased was an undertrial prisoner aged 35 years. The prisoner died on 18
th September 2017 with Upper Gastrointestinal Bleeding with an extensive Mucosal Necrosis of Oesophagus stomach and Duodenum with acute kidney injury with acute respiratory distress syndrome.


There are prescriptions stating abdominal pain and blood in vomiting. The deceased was referred to District Hospital on 4th September 2017 for emergency treatment due to unavailability of required treatment in the jail hospital. He was admitted in AIIMS Rishikesh on the same day evident by the registration receipt. He was further referred to PGIMER, Chandigarh.  He suffered from multi-organ dysfunction.

As per the post-mortem report- the patient was put on mechanical ventilation hemodialysis and broad-spectrum antibiotic after 5 days he could be weaned off the ventilator and supportive management was continued. The pieces from Lungs, kidney, liver, stomach, small intestine and esophagus were kept for Histopathological examination. The various laboratory tests conducted for the detection of chemical poison in it. The test results were negative for poison.

In the inquiry report, all the witnesses have confirmed to the deceased’s disease and the requisite treatment he was going through. There is no complain about torture or any quarrel. The jail authorities were careful and no negligence on their part was observed which formed the cause of the death.

Thus the reason for the death was solely natural.


All the evidence and reports indicate that the deceased was suffering from abdominal pain and vomiting blood. It is indeed a case of Natural death. But at the time of admission of the deceased in jail, during the medical examination, no test revealed the sickness of the patient. There has been no foul play detected and even the post-mortem reveals his sickness as the cause of death.

If at the time of admission in jail, if the deceased would have been detected with the above-mentioned irregularities, more proper care would have been taken for him but also there is no sign of any negligence by the concerned authorities. Thus, the case is closed on the pretext of natural death.


3)  CASE NO. 1482/22/11/2013-JCD


Incident place – District Jail, Tamil Nadu

Incident date- 18/09/13


Name – Kadiresan

S/o Perumalsamy


On 18/09/2013 at around 9.50 pm, police custody accused Kadiseran, aged 43 had surrendered before Judicial Magistrate, Madurai in connection with case Cr. No. 367/13 u/s 302, 201 IPC on 6/9/13 and was admitted in jail for the same. On 18.09.13 at around 1700 hrs, Inspector Jebaraj of Aravakuruchy Police Station took his custody from the judicial magistrate. On the same day at 20:45 hrs, while the inspector was interrogating him he complained of giddiness. The inspector called a private doctor who provided first aid to the accused and advised the treatment. The accused was taken to Apollo Hospital, Karur District, Tamil Nadu and the doctor of Apollo Hospital, after examining him declared him “brought dead”.


The doctor of Apollo Hospital found no external injuries on the body of the deceased. The deceased did not eat the dinner that day but had a glass of fruit juice. A check for poison was done to ascertain the cause for deceased’s death. 

During the inquiry by the magistrate, she found scrotum was found with swelling and in black color, Multiple contusions were found and the right thigh with a small abrasion. Various contusion on the other body parts was also found. She demanded post-mortem report of the deceased. After inquiry and questioning various people, the magistrate came to the conclusion that the injuries were ante-mortem and the certificate and statements by the doctor of Apollo cannot rely on.

The post-mortem reports the cause of death as “shock and cardiac arrest”. The doctors, who conducted the post-mortem stated that the injuries found on the body of the deceased was caused within 24 hours prior to post-mortem and these injuries can very well cause shock and cardiac arrest. It is evident from postmortem that the injuries were caused while the deceased was in police custody.

As the deceased was with inspector Jebaraj so logically he is statutorily liable to explain the injuries and the death of Kathiseran.


The commission deduced that the deceased died in custody of Inspector Jabaraj due to the negligence and torture of the police. This has violated the human rights of the prisoner and therefore the commission has recommended the state to award a compensation of Rs. 5 lakh to the next of kin of the deceased.

The Government decided to initiate criminal and departmental action against the Inspector and those who were with him during the time of interrogation. They also agreed to sanction the recommended amount to the deceased’s relatives and to effect the recovery of the same from the erred police personnel who were involved in this case.

The compensation by the commission is adequately suggested as it is the best decision of the government to recover it from the erred police personnel.


4) CASE NO. 6170/24/57/08-09-JCD


Incident place- District Jail Muzzafarnagar, UP

Incident date- 8th may 2008


Name- Ankit

S/o Pawan Saini


The case relates to the custodial death of under trial prisoner Ankit @ Rasgulla S/o Sh. Pawan Saini age about 18 years on 8th may 2008 in the custody of District jail. The deceased was admitted in the jail on 4th August 2007 in connection with a case u/s 24/4 Arms Act. The deceased was said to have committed suicide by hanging himself in the jail. He was rushed to jail hospital. The jail doctor examined him and referred him to District Hospital where he was declared dead.


The commission during its course of inquiry demanded the inquest, post-mortem and magisterial inquiry report for examination.

The inquest report conducted in this matter has revealed that the deceased died due to the injuries sustained by him on his dead body.

As per the post-mortem report revealed that the deceased died due to Asphyxia due to strangulation.

When the magistrate conducted the inquiry of the same, he examined the police officials and inmates.

The two co- inmates were suspected in the death of the deceased namely, Naeem Qureshi and Gayoor. A case was registered u/s 302 IPC. But the two were acquitted as there was lack of evidence that could establish their crime and the motive to kill the deceased was also not discovered.

The Magistrate, prima facie, found dereliction of duty on the part of prison officials. The learned judge held the Superintendent Jail, Sh. Harish Chander Rai and Constable Rakesh Kumar guilty of not taking adequate measures to ensure safety and security of deceased prisoner. Therefore departmental action against these two was ordered.


The statement given by witnesses said that neither the deceased talked much to anyone nor did he quarrel with anyone. He was just lonely and wanted to elope from jail. The jail authorities and even the inmates were of the view that the deceased committed suicide. It was until the post-mortem report and the magisterial inquiry that the truth was discovered. Taking the negligence of the concerned authorities and no evidence found against the accused inmates, the commission directed a compensation of Rs. 2 lakh to the next kin of the deceased. Acting on the recommendations of the commission, the State Government of U.P. has paid the monetary relief.

Although no amount of money could compensate for the loss of the deceased, the said amount is justifiable as decided by the commission.

This case very well showcases the negligence of the prison authorities and how well they were trying to cover it through all the witnesses. NHRC could only provide the deceased’s family with the compensation as justice. The investigations still weren’t able to decode the motive of the murder because of which Ankit lost his life.


5) CASE NO. 5205/24/18/2013


Incident place- District Jail, Bulandsher

Incident Date- 8th February 2013


Name – Jitender

S/o ShyamBhool


Prisoner Jitender aged 35 years was admitted in District Jail of Bulandsher on 12/01/2012 in CR No- 7/37/04 St. No. 279/04 U/S 302,201, 34 IPC. The accused was sentenced to life imprisonment by the honorable court.

The deceased was admitted in Jail Hospital since 07/02/2013 and was undergoing treatment of acute abdomen pain and vomiting. In view of his deteriorating health of the deceased, he was sent to district hospital BSR for expert treatment and management on 8/02/2013. He was then referred to Medical College Meerut where he was declared dead at 6:40 AM.


The medical certificate at the time of the admission of the deceased in jail does not show any disease or symptoms of any disease. During the examination, the report shows the disease as not appreciable.

Three reminders to the district magistrate and superintendent district prison dated 2nd July 2013, 31st Oct 2013 and 15th Jan 2014 were sent I order to remind them to send the Magistrate Enquiry report along with Medical Treatment Record.

As per the inquest report, there was no external injury on the body of deceased except the old surgery mark. The post-mortem report did not notice any external injury on the body. The cause of death is given as “shock due to Septicaemia.”

The panel doctor of NHRC examine the reports and reported that prior to his death he had complained of pain in abdomen, vomiting, and dyspepsia for more than 15 days before his death for which he was given only symptomatic treatment in jail hospital only. The Autopsy suggested gallbladder was enlarged and the liver had multiple pus pockets. The doctor opined that if the deceased was referred for proper treatment rather than giving him symptomatic treatment, he would have survived. 


After pursuing the suggestions made by the investigating division of the commission it was found it is a clear case of medical negligence on the part of the doctor who treated the convict. This has resulted in the violation of human rights of the prisoner. The jail official remained unsuccessful in giving proper medical care to the deceased. Hence u/s 18 of the Protection of Human Rights Act 1993 was recommended the government of Uttar Pradesh of awarding a compensation of Rs. 3 lakh to the next of kin of the deceased.

The prisoner lost his life all because of the negligence of the official authorities. This has violated his rights and is entitled to compensation from state. The compensation awarded is adequate by the state. The medical facilities in jails are needed to be improved.

Also, the requisite reports demanded by NHRC weren’t received on time. It took them three reminders to provide the commission the same. This shows the lethargic attitude of the authorities and how negligent they are in carrying their work or it can be interpreted in this way too that they were aware of the negligence on their part which was causing a delay in sending the reports to the commission.


Looking at the number of deaths in prisons because of various reasons, the prisoners aren’t safe in the prison, where a lot of jail authorities are recruited. To decrease the number, the prison is needed to be a better place and that calls for reforms in the prison.

Here is a list of some of the reforms that can be implemented to make prisons a better place to live.

  • The prisoners are entitled to certain rights in the prison which includes right to human dignity, the right to basic human needs, the right to communication, the right to access to law, the right to meaningful and gainful employment. The prisoners aren’t informed about their rights and because of this, they are denied of it. The information should be provided to all citizens.
  • The concept of ‘Open Jails’ should be encouraged as that will give the prisoners some liberty and freedom.
  • To handle the cases of suicide, NHRC guidelines should be followed as to minimize the cause of it.
  • The custodial deaths should be properly and timely reported to NHRC and full inquiry should take place as to ascertain the cause so that more reforms can be brought (as mentioned in section 176 (1-A) of Crpc).
  • The jails witnesses most of the deaths due to natural deaths. The proper medical examination should be conducted at the time of admission, so that proper treatment could be provided to the sick people.
  • The medical health of the prisoners should be checked from time to time.
  • The jail hospital is to be updated with modern technology so that the jail can provide with better and emergency treatment.
  • Overcrowding is also one of the reason because of which the prisoners die. Thus a check has to be taken over overcrowding.
  • The state should form various policies and schemes for the victim’s compensation awarded o next of his kin.


A prisoner is the citizen of the country as much as we are. He goes to jail as a punishment, not for the punishment. Thus he is entitled to some basic rights and Right to Life tops that list, otherwise provided.

India is witnessing a number of deaths in jail and sadly these numbers are increasing day by day, year by year. It is the responsibility of the state to ensure that proper facilities and treatment is provided to the prisoners inside. They should maintain their vision of Reformation, Rehabilitation, and Reintegration. And to fulfill their visions. The prison authorities have to adapt to the changing needs.

  1. s.167 Criminal Procedure Code 1973
  2. <> accessed on 10th July 2018.

  3. Babu Singh v. State of UP, 1978 AIR 527.

  4. Prisons Statistics 2015.

  5. < > accessed on 14th June 2018.

  6. D Bhuvan Mohan Patnaik v State of Andhra Pradesh, 1975 SCC (3) 185.

  7. Rohatash Kumar v State of Haryana (2013)14 SCC 290


Authored By:  YUVRAJ SINGH | B.COM LL.B(H)



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