MHA advises States not to grant parole or furlough to prisoners committed heinous crimes

New Delhi: Ministry of Home Affairs has advised all States and Union Territory (UTs) Governments not to give parole or furlough to the prisoners who had committed heinous crimes and also to review the practices of releasing inmates for a temporary period.
In an advisory issued to all Chief Secretaries of States and UTs, the Home Ministry, noting that the release on parole is not an absolute right rather a concession, said that the prisoners whose immediate presence in the society may be considered dangerous or otherwise prejudicial to public peace or who are considered dangerous or convicted for the offence like assault, outbreak of riot, mutiny, dacoity, terrorist crimes, kidnapping for ransom, smuggling of commercial quantity of narcotic and psychotropic substances and such prisoners who in the opinion of District Magistrate and District Superintendent of Police may not report back to the prison after completion of the furlough period, should not be released on parole or furlough.
The Home Ministry also said that while considering the temporary release of the prisoners, the State must include a psychologist, criminologist or a correctional administration expert to the ‘Sentence Review Board’ or such committees which decides grant of parole or furlough and should obtain their opinion before such temporary release.
“Parole and furlough may not be granted as a matter of routine and may be decided by a Committee of officers and behavioural experts and this should not be granted to the inmates sentenced for sexual offences, heinous crimes like murder, or child abduction”, the MHA clarified in its advisory.
MHA has has also shared various guidelines and rulings of the Supreme Court in matters of prison administration with all States and UTs, in the form of advisories issued from time to time.
Model Prison Manual, 2016 provides that the privilege of release on parole and furlough should be allowed to selective prisoners on the basis of well-defined norms of eligibility and propriety, the latest advisory stated.