ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

Vijay RaghavanSubscribe to Vijay Raghavan

Penalising Poverty

The unconstitutional Bombay Prevention of Begging Act, 1959 criminalises begging and targets people for being homeless or unemployed despite “the relief of the disabled and unemployable” being a state responsibility. The state penalises the poor for being poor. Instead, it must identify and understand the reasons that lead people towards begging and alter laws and policies to provide for structures and an institutional framework that build people’s capacities to move out of destitution. Myths around begging must be broken to effect a change in perceptions and attitudes to achieve this end.

Vocational Training in Indian Prisons

The vocational training programmes offered in Indian prisons with the intention of rehabilitating offenders are not only supposed to train prisoners in vocational knowledge and skills, but also strengthen their will to work, sense of self-help, and spirit of cooperation by having them work with others in a regulated environment. However, with the criminal justice system laying undue emphasis on the incarceration of criminals alone, the goals of reformation and rehabilitation of lawbreakers get undermined.

Undertrial Prisoners in India

Across the world, prisons are increasingly used as instruments of social control. With its huge undertrial population in jails, India is headed in the same direction. Measures like restricting visitors' access to prisons only aggravate the situation.

Over-Representation of Muslims

An analysis of the study of Maharashtra prisons commissioned by the state's Minorities Commission fi nds an over-representation of Muslims in jails. A clear link is established between the criminal justice system and discrimination faced by this minority. This study points to the need for State and non-State institutions to address the marginalisation faced by Muslims which leads to such discrimination.

Guidelines for Public-Private Partnership in Prison Management

A guarded approach must be taken while encouraging the idea of public-private partnership in prisons and correctional administration. Without developing a clearly laid down framework, already provided by a slew of government reports and committees in the past, the PPP model could lead to a backdoor entry for privatisation of prisons in the country.
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