A trip by the Chief Justice to Srinagar's Central Jail
Nadia Farooq

The Chief Justice further emphasised the need to guarantee inmates’ access to justice and provide them with sufficient legal representation.

Justice N. Kotiswar Singh, Chief Justice of the High Court of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh and Patron-in-chief of the J&K Legal Services Authority, paid a visit to the Central Jail in Srinagar today to evaluate the living conditions inside and the quality of legal aid services available to the inmates.

Amit Gupta, Member Secretary of the J&K Legal Services Authority, and M K Sharma, Principal Secretary to the Chief Justice, also joined them.


The Chief Justice was greeted by Director General of Prisons for J&K, Deepak Kumar, and Chairman of the District Legal Services Authority for Srinagar, Jawad Ahmed, upon his arrival at Central Jail. Other officials from Central Jail Srinagar, including the superintendent, Daljit Singh, and the special police officer for the northern district of Srinagar, Raja Zuhaib, were also there.

A group of CRPF guards stationed at the Central Jail formed a ceremonial guard of honour for the Chief Justice upon his arrival.

The Chief Justice met with every prisoner at the facility, went on a tour of the barracks, and listened to their complaints. The Chief Justice reassured the prisoners that their legitimate complaints would be heard, and he gave immediate directives to the relevant authorities to resolve the issues raised by the prisoners as soon as possible.

The Chief Justice visited Central Jail Srinagar and had fruitful conversations with the staff, legal aid volunteers, and convicts there. During conversations, all detainees confirmed that they are now being represented in court by a lawyer, either privately retained or appointed by the local District Legal Services Authority.

The Chief Justice ordered the Central Jail to establish a video conference with the District Court in Srinagar, spoke with the facility’s System Assistant, and remarked well on the VC’s performance.

The Chief Justice further emphasised the need to guarantee inmates’ access to justice and provide them with sufficient legal representation.

The Chief Justice also visited the Central Jail Srinagar’s Legal Aid Clinic, recognising the importance of the clinic’s work with the incarcerated. The Chief Justice was pleased with the clinic’s operation and praised the diligent work of the clinic’s legal paralegal volunteers in protecting inmates’ rights.

The Central Jail’s Chief Justice went on an exhaustive tour of the facility, stopping at the Medical Facility, Recreational Facility, Tailoring Unit, Gymnasium, Carpentry Unit, Vet Canteen, Mulaqaat Centre, Calling Booth, and more.

In his remarks to the Chief Justice, the Director General of Prisons (DG Prisons) promised that measures would be taken as soon as possible to alleviate overcrowding at Srinagar’s Central Jail, as well as to provide more shower facilities for the incarcerated.

The trip’s major objective was to assess the state of affairs within the Central Jail Srinagar and to assess the performance of the Legal Aid Clinic there.



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