SRINAGAR: Observing that the existing jail manual undisputedly requires to be urgently looked into, Jammu and Kashmir High Court has granted government eight weeks time to finalize it.
Hearing a Public Interest Litigation, a division bench of Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice Puneet Gupta ordered that in case of the failure to comply with its orders, the Principal Secretary to J&K Government, Home Department, shall remain personally present before it on the next date of hearing on February 17. “An adjournment is yet again requested by B. A. Dar, learned Sr. AAG, submitting that the Jail Manual is at the last stage of finalization. Inasmuch as this matter has been pending in this Court for over two years now, it is undisputed that the existing Jail Manual requires to be urgently looked into which exercise is stated to have been undertaken and amendments have been made,” the bench observed in the order, a copy of which lies with news agency GNS.
The court directed the senior AAG to file the latest report regarding the Jail Manual before it within eight weeks,” failing which the Principal Secretary to Government, Home Department, Union Territory of Jammu & Kashmir shall remain personally present before this Court on the next date of hearing.”
In April last year, the government had assured the court that the finalization of the Jail Manual was “nearly complete” and the same shall be placed before it by May 14, 2019.
Meanwhile, advocate T. M. Shamsi, Special Counsel appearing for the UT of Ladakh, sought more time on the ground that the Government was taking serious examination of the Jail Manuals of other States and Union Territories before finalizing the Jail Manual which would be applicable in the UT of Ladakh.