Webinar on Prisoners’ Rights – Response to Covid -19 Pandemic in Northeast India

A webinar was held with focus on discussing the developments in the Northeast on prisoners’ rights during the pandemic. In addition to being a knowledge-sharing platform, the webinar was also meant to be a training and capacity building exercise to forge a future path for strategic litigation in prison related issues. The webinar was attended by members of HRLN and our networking partners from six Northeastern states, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland and Sikkim and also there were participants from Delhi.

The welcome note was addressed by Olivia Bang, Director of the Delhi Unit of HRLN. She laid out that there are six main sessions beginning with a session on Supreme Court directions and orders passed during the COVID-19 Pandemic. A session on Foreign Prisoners was also scheduled as the Northeast has in recent times seen many cases of Rohingyas being prosecuted for illegal entry into the country despite the fact that they have been seeking asylum here after fleeing persecution in Myanmar. There are sessions on the situation of prisons in Assam, Manipur and Nagaland and there is also a knowledge-sharing session on the experience of prison visits in Northeast and the main issues identified during such visits.