Undertrials

India has a long legal tradition and is the birthplace of judicial activism in Asia.

 

Legal infrastructure is in place and legal aid services are set up at national, state and district levels. Yet the national pre-trial detainee rate is 71% out the total prison population. This means that India has one of the world’s largest populations of pre-trial detainees, approximately a quarter of a million people.

 

All these detainees, be they accused or merely suspected of having committed a crime, languish in overcrowded, unsanitary and dangerous prisons, often for years at a time.

Waiting forever for a fair trial

A struggle to stay alive. Result of prison fights.

An endless wait to get justice thousands of them are merely suspected of having committed a crime. Most of them have committed petty offences like pick pocketing or small time robberies. Their tenure spent is prison waiting for trial has exceeded more than that of sentence if it was awarded.

One of the migrant worker from a small village of India came to Delhi(capital of India) looking for a better future

During the afternoon break when the inmates are allowed to come out of the wards in a common area .

There are several instances where the inmates are abandoned by their families and they are stuck inside as they don't have nominal amount of money for bails and legal help. The legal officers appointed inside the prison are interested in lucrative cases.

One of the NGOs was distributing copies of 'Rights of Prison Inmates'

In one of the evenings, reading the copy of rights of inmates.

Truck driver caught with 200 pounds of Marijuana claims to be unaware of its presence in the truck while driving. The truck owner came out clean takes no responsibility.

Rush hour in front of a legal officer.

They are both convicted of murder when they were in their early youth. They are serving seventeen years of which ten has already passed.

Copyrights  2015 Tushar Kanti Mandal.

Documentary and art work by Tushar Kanti Mandal