JULLY, 4 Nov: Arunachal Pradesh State Legal Services Authority (APSLSA) Member Secretary Yomge Ado, along with legal aid counsels, a jail visiting lawyer, paralegal volunteers and officials inspected the district jail here on Friday.
During their meeting with Deputy Inspector General (Jail) Tojo Karga, doctors and medical staff of the prison, issues regarding providing timely and free legal assistance to the undertrial prisoners (UTP) and convicts, granted under Section 12 of the Legal Services Authority Act, 1987, and various issues of the jail, such as medical attention, food, hygiene, health, inmates’ safety etc, were discussed.
Ado apprised the inmates of their “right to avail free legal aid from legal services institutions and provisions under which prisoners can be effectively represented in the courts, for which the legal services authority will provide legal aid counsels free of cost.”
“All persons in custody are entitled to legal aid under Section 12 of the Legal Services Authorities Act, 1987. One of the crucial and core activities of the legal services institutions is providing legal aid and ensuring that every prisoner is provided free legal aid, as mandated under the National Legal Services Authority’s free and competent legal services schemes and regulations,” Ado said.
Altogether 236 inmates, including UTPs and convicts, were present during the inspection. Since the total intake capacity of the jail is for 177 prisoners, it is currently overcrowded by 59 inmates.
Ado suggested “decongesting the jail and facilitating basic education, especially to the long-term inmates.”