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    Concluded: National training programme on Prisoners' Rights

    Date: 29/06/2018 - 01/07/2018

    Venue: O.P. Jindal Global University, Sonipat, Haryana

    Centre for Constitutional Rights India, Human Rights Law Network (HRLN) in collaboration with O.P. Jindal Global University, National Legal Services Authority (NALSA), Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI), International Bridges to Justice India (IBJ), Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) and India Vision Foundation (IVF) organised a 3-day National Training on Prisoners’ Rights. The training had about 250 participants from all over the country including advocates working with state and district legal service authorities, as well as NGOs, researchers, academicians, eminent social activists, civil society groups, law students, etc. who wish to work or are already working in the field of human rights in general and prisoners’ rights in particular.

    The training was conducted with the objective to:
    1. Educate and inform the lawyers, activists, and concerned civil society groups about the issues inside the prisons, and equip them with tools to address the same.
    2. Build and strengthen the legal aid system in India through fostering partnerships with District, State and National legal aid service authorities, lawyers, NGOs and civil society groups.
    3. Build partnerships and a network of prison reform activists, lawyers, NGOs working with prisoners, academics, and other concerned members of the civil society to bring them on a common platform.

    The 3-day training programme provided an insight to the participants about the various issues that relate to prisons like the prison conditions, prison legal aid schemes, legal procedures from the role of magistrates to the role of lawyers, the various directions of the Supreme Court with regard to checking unnecessary detentions, constitution and working of undertrial review commttees, directions and guidelines with regad to investigations in deaths in prisons, constitution of visitors’ boards, functioning of lok adalats, jail adalats, etc. During the course of the 3-day training the participants had opportunity to hear and interact with Mr. Chaman Lal, Formenr Special Rapporteur, National Human Rights Commission, Justice A.K. Mittal, Acting Chief Justice of Punjab & Haryana High Court, Member Secretaries of NALSA and Delhi State Legal Service Authority, senior advocates like Colin Gonsalves, Navkiran Singh, as well as academicians like Prof. Mrinal Satish, Prof. Aparna Chandra, Prof. Vijay Raghavan, Prof. Dr. Y.S.R. Murthy, to name a few. The training also had participation from senior prison officials and senior government officials like Dr. Kiran Bedi; Shri Ajay Kashyap, DG, Tihar and Dr. Upneet Lalli, Director RICA, who have been involved in running the prisons as well as making policies in order to improve the prison system.

    The training programme saw intensive discussions on the role of lawyers to improve the plight of the indigent prisoners, as well as prisoners who are disabled, mentally ill, or foreign nationals, who have limited means to access the justice system. There were also interaction with activists and former prisoners like Soni Sori and the hardships faced by lawyers in defending the rights of political prisoners or prisoners in conflict zones like Chhattisgarh and J&K. The lawyers expressed their difficulties in working on cases of torture and deaths in prisons and how the investigations in such cases could be conducted.

    At the end of the 3 days, a Plan of Action was formulated, where the panel lawyers, and lawyers working with HRLN, CHRI, IBJ and TISS identified issues in theiir own states. These included issues on legal aid like access to trial court records to empanelled lawyers, enhancement of compensation of panel lawyers, release on personal bond, to determine bail amount as per the socio-economic capacity of the arrestee, release of prisoners with mental illness, appointment of counselors, doctors, gynaecologists and female doctors for women prisoners, guidelines on searching and frisking of women prisoners, appointment of a strong and independent visitors board, improvement of mulaqat infrastructure, etc.

    The panel lawyers and advocates working with HRLN, IBJ and CHRI agreed to collaborate with each other to file PILs on the issues highlighted during the course of the training. The participants also agreed to form a platform for exchanging information on the cases and networking with each other. The training concluded with a vote of thanks to all the organisers and distribution of certificates to all the attendees.

    Organised by Human Rights Law Network’s Centre for Constitutional Rights, India, O.P. Jindal Global University (JGU), National Legal Services Authority (NALSA), Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI), International Bridges to Justice India (IBJ), Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), India Vision Foundation (IVF)

    Media Partner: Latest Laws.com

     

    Day – 1: Friday: June 29

    Time

    Issues

    Resource person

    9 – 9:20

    Inaugural Session

    ·   Dr. Y.S.R. Murthy, Registrar

    JGU

    ·   Colin Gonsalves, Founder, HRLN

    9:20 – 10:00

    Overview of prison reforms

    Mr. Chaman Lal, Former Special Rapporteur, National Human Rights Commission

    10:00 – 11:30

    Prison conditions

     

    ·   Prof. Vijay Raghavan (Maharashtra) Moderator

    ·   Avni Bahri, National Commission for Women

    ·   Sabika Abbas Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative

    ·   Adv Tapan Vahal (U.P.)

    ·   Adv Anshu Raj Singh (Bihar)

    ·   Adv Jyotiranjan Senapati (Odisha)

    ·   Raja Bagga, Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative

    11:30 – 11:45

    Tea Break

    11:45 – 1:00

    Prison Legal Aid Schemes

     

    ·   Mr. Justice A.K. Mittal (Chair and Moderator)

    ·   Shri Alok Agarwal, Member Secretary, National Legal Services Authority 

    ·   Shri Sanjiv Jain, Member Secretary, Delhi State Legal Service Authority

    1:00 – 2:00

    Lunch

    2:00 – 3:00

    Vulnerable categories

    ·             Mentally ill

    ·             Disabled, sick, old, terminally ill

     

    ·   Dr. Nimesh Desai, The Institute of Human Behaviour & Allied Sciences (Moderator)

    ·   Ms. Seema Baquer

    ·   Shri Nipun Malhotra, NIPMAN Foundation

    ·   Dr. Sandeep Govil

    ·   Dr. Anbu Dorai, The Banyan

    3:00 – 4:00

    ·             Women in custody and women with children

    ·             Juveniles

    ·             Foreign nationals

     

     

    ·   Ms. Vimalaa Mehra (Ex. DG, Tihar) (Chair and Moderator)

    ·   Adv. Anu Narula

    ·   Dr. Rajesh Kumar (SPYM)

    ·   Adv. Ajay Verma

    ·   Ms. Palak Chaudhari, Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative

    4:00 – 4:15

    Tea Break

    4:15 – 5:15

     

     

     

     

    Checking unnecessary detention

    ·             Arrest procedures

    ·             Role of magistrate

    ·             Role of lawyers

    ·   Prof. Vijay Raghavan, TISS (Moderator)

    ·   Mr. Raja Bagga, Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative

    ·   Mr. Ajay Verma, (IBJ)

    5:15 – 6

    SC: re: Inhuman conditions in prisons

    Adv Gaurav Agrawal (Amicus)

    6 – 6:30

    Tea Break

     

    6:30 – 7:15

    Role of students in prison legal aid

     

    ·   Prof. Ajay Pandey, JGU (Moderator)

    ·   Ms. Amrita Paul, CHRI

    ·   Dr. Garima Tiwari, Bennett University

    7:15 – 8:30

    Lawyers from the Legal Services Authorities speak

     

    Coordinator: Colin Gonsalves

    Delhi, Punjab, Haryana, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Jammu & Kashmir

     

    8:30 onwards

    Dinner

     

           

     

    Day – 2: Saturday: June 30, 2018

    Time

    Issues

    Resource person

    9 – 10:30

    Lawyers from the Legal Services Authorities speak

     

    Coordinator: Colin Gonsalves

    Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh,  Bihar, Arunachal Pradesh, Kerala, Manipur, Assam, Nagaland

    10:30 – 11:15

    How to do a PIL on prisoners’ rights

    Colin Gonsalves, Founder, HRLN

    11:15 – 11:30

    Tea Break

    11:30 – 12:15

    Custodial Torture

     

    ·   Prof. (Dr.) Y.S.R. Murthy, Registrar, JGU  (Moderator) 

    ·   Shri D. Suresh Kumar, IAPL

    12:15 – 1:15

    Deaths in prisons

     

    ·   Adv Sunil Gupta (Moderator)

    ·   Dr. Murali Karnam

    ·   Shri Pupul Dutta, NHRC

    ·   Adv Navkiran Singh, LFHRI

    1:15 – 2:15

    Lunch

    2:15 – 3:45

    Undertrial Review Committees

     

     

     

     

    Sentence Review Boards

    ·   Shri S.S. Rathi, NALSA (Chair and Moderator)

    ·   Shri Sunil Chauhan, NALSA

    ·   Ms. Sugandha Shankar, CHRI

    ·   Shri Narendra Singh, Secretary, LSA

     

     

    ·   Adv Sunil Gupta, HRLN

    3:45 – 5:00

    Political prisoners

    Prisoners in conflict zones

     

    ·   Adv Arun Fereira (Chair and Moderator)

    ·   Adv Kishore Narayan, Chhattisgarh

    ·   Adv Amarnath Pandey, Chhattisgarh

    ·   Ms. Soni Sori, Chhattisgarh

    ·   Adv Shah Faizal, Kashmir

    ·   Adv Shadab Ansari, Jharkhand

    5:00 – 5:30

    Tea break

    5:30 – 6:30

    Parallel Session: 1

    Visitor’s Boards

     

     

     

     

    Parallel Session: 2 (Auditorium)

    Changes needed in the Model Prison Manual

     

     

    Parallel Session: 3

    Lok Adalats & Jail Adalats

     

     

    ·   Ms. Madhurima Dhanuka, CHRI (Moderator)

    ·   Adv Navkiran Singh, LFHRI

    ·   Adv Ritu Kumar, HRLN

     

     

    ·   Shri B.V. Trivedi, former Dy. Director, BPR&D (Moderator)

    ·   Ms. Sugandha Shankar, CHRI

    ·   Adv Sunil Gupta, HRLN

     

    ·   Shri S.S. Rathi, NALSA

    ·   Adv Silvin Kale, Prayas

    ·   Shri Narendra Singh, Secretary, LSA

    6:30 – 7:00

    Reports of the Parallel Sessions

    7:00 – 8:00

    ·             Interaction between lawyers & clients

    ·             Visitation rights of families

    ·   Adv Silvin Kale, Prayas  (Moderator)

    ·   Shri Ravindra Vaidya, Varhad

    ·   Shri Ravi Srivastva, IVF

    8:00 pm onwards

    Dinner

     

    Day – 3: Sunday: July 1, 2018

    Time

    Issues

    Resource person

    9:00 – 9:30

    Presidential Address

    Prof. Dr. C. Raj Kumar, Vice Chancellor, JGU

    9:30 – 10:00

    Guest of Honour: Vision for prison reform

    Her Excellency Dr. Kiran Bedi, Lt. Governor, Puducherry

    10:00 – 11:00

    Experiences of senior prison officials

     

    ·        Shri Ajay Kashyap, DG, Tihar (Moderator)

    ·        Dr. Upneet Lalli, Director, RICA

    ·        Shri Harinder Singh, SP, Jind, Haryana

    11:00 – 11:15

    Tea Break

    11:15 – 1:00

    Leading judgments on prisoners’ rights

     

    ·        Dr. Mrinal Satish, NLUD

    ·        Dr. Aparna Chandra, NLUD

    1:00 – 2:00

    Lunch

    2:00 – 3:15

    Role of lawyers in protecting human rights of prisoners

     

    ·        Dr. Vageshwari Deswal, Faculty of Law, DU

    ·        Ms. Madhurima Dhanuka, CHRI

    ·        Adv Sunil Gupta, HRLN

    3:15 – 4:15

    Legal representation of death row prisoners

    Prof. Shreya Rastogi, NLUD

    4:15 – 4:30

    Tea Break

    4:30 – 5:15

    Prison wages, Victim Compensation fund/Victim Welfare Fund

     

    ·   Shri Santosh Upadhyaya

    ·   Shri B.V. Trivedi, Former Dy. Dir., BPR&D

    ·   Dr. K.K. Gupta, DIG Prisons, Chhattisgarh

    5:15 – 5:30

    Address by Vice Chancellor

    Prof. Dr. C. Raj Kumar, Vice Chancellor, JGU

    5:30 – 7:00

    Plan of action for PILs in the High Courts and the Supreme Court

    ·         Adv Ajay Verma, IBJ (Moderator)

    ·         Adv Silvin Kale, Prayas, TISS

    ·         Archana Rupwate, HRLN

    ·         Ms. Amrita Paul, CHRI

    ·         Prof. (Dr.) Y.S.R. Murthy, Registrar, JGU

    ·         Adv Pragya Parijat Singh, HRLN

    7:00 – 7:30 

    Presentation of certificates to participants

    Prof. (Dr.) Y.S.R. Murthy, Registrar, JGU

    7:30 pm onwards

    Dinner

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