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Magisterial probe ordered into death of Tihar inmates

Staff Reporter

To be completed by June 25, it would look into six different aspects

Inquest proceedings also being conducted under Section 176 of Cr.P.C. Lockout time advanced to 5 a.m. and lock-up time extended to 7 p.m.

On the recommendation of the State Home Department, Delhi Lieutenant-Governor Tejendra Khanna on Wednesday ordered a magisterial inquiry into the death of six inmates of Tihar Central Jail here since June 6.

To be conducted by Additional District Magistrate (West) Sanjeev Mittal, the probe would be completed by June 25 and would look into six different aspects: It would determine the sections of law under which the inmates had been detained and details of the cases and stage of trial. The inquiry would also investigate the period spent by the inmates under police custody and judicial custody respectively.

It would also record the number of appearances before the trial courts. The details of medical examination at the time of being lodged in jail would be noted by the probe along with the subsequent treatment given and specific details as to the referral treatment given to the inmates.

The magistrate would also look into the nature and course of treatment at the referral hospital, whether inquest proceedings have started and their stage, and the need for improving necessary infrastructure such as adequate drinking water and sanitation to minimise the incidents of debilitation and disease.

Besides the magisterial inquiry, inquest proceedings are also being conducted under the provisions of Section 176 of the Cr.P.C. by the Metropolitan Magistrates and Sub-Divisional Magistrates concerned and further action in the matter would be taken on the receipt of inquest reports, the Delhi Government said on Wednesday.

During inquest proceedings, the statements of co-prisoners and witnesses would be recorded by the Magistrate and the post-mortem conducted by a panel of doctors.

The Lieutenant-Governor has also directed the Jail Superintendent and Medical Officers of Delhi Prisons to take urgent measures in view of the rising temperature and humidity.

They have also been told to interact with prisoners and guide them to prevent heat strokes. The lockout time in the morning has been advanced to 5 a.m. and lock-up time has been extended to 7 p.m. to increase open-air movement time by more than an hour.

All senior medical officers have also been asked to have a ready list of seriously sick prisoners and to follow up their medical check-up on daily basis. During the coming fortnight, a medical officer will also be posted in the night duty instead of the junior residents.

It has also been directed that lemon water be made available to the inmates and to under-trials going to or returning from courts.

Adequate supply of water through water tankers would be made in the prisons and in case of emergencies, patients would be referred directly to Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Hospital and other hospitals like Ram Manohar Lohia and Safdarjang if the clinical condition so demands.

NHRC also to probe

PTI adds: The NHRC will also send an investigation team to Tihar Jail to probe the deaths, a Commission spokesperson said

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