NHRC asks Odisha govt to pay Rs 1 lakh in custodial suicide case

Odisha Sun Times Bureau

Bhubaneswar, June 17:

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has ordered the Odisha government to pay a sum of Rs one lakh as compensation/ monetary relief to the next of kin of an under trial prisoner who committed suicide while in custody at the Umerkote Sub Jail in Nabarangpur district in 2012.

The Commission has asked the state chief secretary to comply with its order in the matter and submit proof of compliance within six weeks.

In his petition, filed with the NHRC, young lawyer and human rights activist Prabir Das had maintained that the deceased prisoner Tapan Biswas (26) was in the custody of Sub Jail Umerkote on September 7, 2012, the day of the incident and therefore, under the care and protection of the State. But the jail officials of the State failed to ensure the safety of the prisoner’s life as a result of which he got an opportunity to commit suicide.

The young lawyer, in his petition, contended that the state government was liable to compensate the next of kin of the deceased prisoner for causing violation of the right to life of the deceased by its officials.

The activist stated that the departmental inquiry conducted by the superintendent, circle jail, Koraput had also found gross misconduct, negligence and dereliction of duty on the part of the two warders Himanshu Shekhar Pakre and Subhash Dakua of Umerkote Sub Jail in this respect.

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