The Supreme Court on Monday, March 01, 2021 passed an order concerning remission after serving minimum sentence.
The two judge bench comprising of Hon’ble Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and Hemant Gupta, was of the view that the National Legal Services Authority [NALSA] should make a comprehensive guideline regarding how the matter of seeking remission after serving minimum sentence as per the respective State policies should be dealt with.
It also stated whether a policy should be made in the matters of narcotics in this regard and if yes, how can legal assistance be provided for lesser sentences when this cause arises years later. It also stated a possibility that once NALSA gave a comprehensive report the court would look into giving authority for nation-wide application of such guidelines.
The court was also informed of software made by a convict in Haryana, which the state found worth implementing and is quite comprehensive. The possibility of adopting this software nation-wide was also expressed.
Another point in this matter was that sometimes cases arrive at the Supreme Court directly and there is a time lag between registration of the case and legal assistance being rendered. The concerned registrar was directed to interact with NALSA for the same.
In the current case it was found that the petitioner had served a ten year sentence under the NDPS act and also an additional six months for non-payment of fines. It was found appropriate to substitute the sentence of one year with six months and since the petitioner had already served the same, he was set free.
Story by Sai Kulkarni-Intern