New Delhi, EW News: The Supreme Court has taken cognizance of the alarming issue of women prisoners becoming pregnant in jails across West Bengal, with approximately 196 babies born in different correctional facilities in the state. While expressing concern over the revelation, the apex court has announced its intention to investigate this matter further.
A bench comprising Justice Ahsanuddin Amanullah and Justice Sanjay Kumar has tasked Senior Advocate Gaurav Agrawal, serving as the amicus curiae in a suo motu case on prison conditions, to delve into the issue of pregnancies among women inmates and submit a comprehensive report to the court.
The issue came to light during proceedings before the Calcutta High Court on Thursday, where an amicus curiae raised concerns regarding prison reforms and correctional facilities in West Bengal. Responding to the gravity of the situation, a division bench of Chief Justice TS Sivagnanam and Justice Supratim Bhattacharya decided to escalate the matter to a division bench dealing with criminal cases.
In response to the revelations, the amicus proposed prohibiting male employees from entering enclosures housing women prisoners to prevent such occurrences in the future. The Supreme Court, recognizing the urgency of the situation, has instructed the amicus curiae to thoroughly investigate the matter and furnish a detailed report to the court.
As the legal proceedings unfold, the spotlight remains firmly on addressing systemic issues within the prison system to ensure the safety and welfare of inmates, particularly vulnerable populations such as pregnant women.
The Supreme Court’s decision to investigate the concerning trend of pregnancies among women prisoners in West Bengal jails underscores the pressing need for reforms within the correctional system. With the welfare of inmates at stake, the court’s proactive approach reflects its commitment to upholding fundamental rights and ensuring equitable treatment for all individuals within the criminal justice system.