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SC orders states, UTs to ensure internet facility with adequate speed in all jails

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Satya Prakash

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 23

Taking note of inordinate delay in release of prisoners granted bail by courts due to communication problems, the Supreme Court on Thursday ordered states and union territories to provide internet connectivity with adequate speed to all jails.

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“We direct the Chief Secretaries of all the States/UTs to ensure the availability of internet facility with adequate speed in each and every jail in their respective States/UTs and take necessary steps to arrange for internet facility expeditiously wherever the same is not available,” a Bench led by Chief Justice of India NV Ramana said, posting the matter for further hearing after two weeks.

“Till then, communication shall be made through the nodal officers of the state governments under the ‘FASTER’ system. The Director General, National Informatics Centre, Secretary (Home) of all the states/UTs and the Director General/Inspector General of prisons of all the states/UTs shall ensure smooth and successful implementation of FASTER system and shall coordinate with the Registry of this court in this regard,” it ordered.

In order to ensure faster communication and compliance of its orders, the top court has undertaken a project—Fast and Secure Transmission of Electronic Records (FASTER). States have already appointed nodal officers for its smooth functioning, it noted.

Noting that requisite amendment in the rules and procedure for the Supreme Court will be taken up on the administrative side, the Bench said “all the duty-holders shall amend their rules/procedure/practice/directions forthwith, to recognize thee-authenticated copy of the order of this Court communicated to them through FASTER system and shall comply with the directions contained therein.”

Earlier, the top court had on July 16 taken suo motu cognizance of delay in release of convicts even after grant of bail due to non-receipt or non-verification of the judicial orders. It had asked the SC Secretary General to frame a scheme in consultation with amicus curiae and senior advocate Dushaynt Dave and Solicitor General Tushar Mehta for setting up a “secure, credible and authentic channel” for transmission of the orders for execution.

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