ANDHRA PRADESH

No more shackles for 118 convicts

ANANTAPUR, AUG. 14. For 118 convicts at the Open Air Jail on the outskirts of Anantapur, the dawn of 58th Independence Day may usher in freedom.

As per GOs 189 and 190 the jail authorities have recommended pardon for 118 of the 177 inmates. Life convicts (109) who have completed seven years of sentence and three years of remission and nine convicts sentenced to 10 years or below imprisonment and who have completed half of it, including the remission of one month per year were recommended for amnesty.

The Jail Superintendent, K.V. Ramana, said some of those who would be released had come to the jail recently. Convicts who complete two years of closed imprisonment and who display good conduct and discipline are generally sent to the open-air jail, he said.

Most from Rayalaseema

A majority of the convicts to be released on August 15 were from the four Rayalaseema districts, he noted. Convicts will be released in such large numbers for the first time, he said. In 1997, 54 convicts were pardoned. After that, only a very few convicts were released every year.

Mr. Ramana said they would open a sealed cover from the Government, mentioning the convicts to be released, during the national flag hoisting ceremony tomorrow.

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