In an effort to keep the trials of the prisoners moving without getting them infected by the Covid virus, the state correctional home administration has decided to start online trial of inmates experimentally at Presidency Correctional Home in Kolkata. This is part of the joint venture launched by the Centre and the state to start online trials of the inmates.
"In the present situation physical production of the jail inmates is too risky because they can easily get infected. Naturally in this situation the Supreme Court of India and the Calcutta High Court are also promoting virtual trial and production of the inmates. So, we have decided to start an online trial of inmates experimentally. It will start from the Presidency Correctional Home and if it is successful then we will start it in other correctional homes also," a senior official of the state correctional services said.
"We are trying to develop a highly sophisticated system where a kiosk will be set up inside the jail premises keeping in mind the security aspects of the prisoners. The kiosk will have an extended digital platform where all the people who are party to the case will be encompassed. A link will be generated and it will be sent to everyone including the court, the public prosecutor, the defence lawyer and all the witnesses to the case," a senior official of Presidency Correctional Home said.
According to the official, the link will enable users to enter into the digital cordon and participate in the trial process. The entire process will take 15 to 20 minutes and it will have a capacity to accommodate at least 15 undertrials in a single trial process. "A technically efficient police officer will be appointed to handle the whole process of trial and production," the official added.
According to sources in the state correctional services, a nodal officer has already been appointed to conduct the trial through direct link to the court from the online correctional facility. The nodal officer will coordinate with the judiciary, the Centre and the state.
The state correctional services believe that this will not only help in keeping the judicial system of trial and production normal but the state will have some financial benefits through the entire process. "For the production of the inmates the jail authorities need to make adequate arrangements and like the prison van, the armed police officers and other police personnel to ferry the inmates from the jail to the court. It takes at least Rs 10000 to Rs 12000 per day for the production of the inmates per day," the official said.
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