444 UTPs Lodged In Odisha Jails Despite Getting Bail: OSLSA Informs HC

Cuttack: A total of 444 under-trial prisoners (UTPs), who were directed by courts to be released on bail, are still in jails in Odisha as they have not been released because of their incapacity to furnish bail bonds.

The Odisha State Legal Services Authority (OSLSA) placed this information before the Orissa High Court on Friday. The court was hearing a PIL filed by one Krushna Prasad Sahoo in 2006 on overcrowding and other problems in the prisons.

Member secretary of OSLSA Sudipta Acharya, who was present in virtual mode, admitted that 444 UTPs were in jails of the state despite being granted bail by courts.

He said several of them do not furnish bail bonds as they are accused in multiple cases.
The Supreme Court had laid down a Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) which included release of such UTPs on Personal Recognisance Bond (PR Bond), Amicus Curiae Gautam Mishra pointed out raising the issue.

Taking on record the submissions, division bench of Chief Justice Chakradhari Sharan Singh and Justice M S Raman said, “The Court requests the Member Secretary OSLSA, in view of the seriousness and urgency of the matter, to hold online meeting with the secretary of District Legal Service Authorities within a week so as to ensure the Supreme Court directions are duly complied with.”

While posting the matter to April 22, the bench further said, “On that date the member secretary, OSLSA, shall also submit a report as regards to up-to-date position of UTPs who are still in jail custody despite bail orders granted in their favour.”

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