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Resource id #3 Law fails to protect human rights of mentally challenged prisoner - Volume 2 Issue 1: Disability News and Information Service for India

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Volume 2 Issue 1 - January 01, 2004

Law fails to protect human rights of mentally challenged prisoner

DNIS News Network -- Two decades ago, a man was arrested in a murder case and was shifted to a mental hospital without being produced in court. Ever since, there has been no mention of him and the case seems to have been forgotten.

The National Human Rights Commission has intervened and stirred up the once forgotten case of Ajai Singh, an undertrial convicted in a murder, which took place in 1976. He was arrested and admitted to Ambala Jail in 1977. As his mental health did not allow him to stand trial, he was transferred to Amritsar Mental Hospital. He has been languishing there ever since.

As required by law, the hospital had not submitted periodic reports on the undertrial's medical health to the court. The hospital superintendent has been asked to account for this. Also held accountable are the Ambala Central Jail superintendent and the Kurukshetra additional sessions judge.

This is yet another case of negligence on the part of the judiciary to uphold the human rights of prisoners.

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