THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Kerala is all set to link its 57 prisons with courts through video conferencing. In an initiative to ensure smooth conduct of court proceedings and avoid unnecessary hardships, the state is coming up with a video conferencing system by December.
Currently, in the final phase, the facility will link jails in 11 districts in the state - except Kasaragod, Idukki and Wayanad - at a cost of Rs 24.24 crore. Video conferencing facilities have been set up at all jails and courts in Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Kottayam, Alappuzha, Pathanamthitta and Ernakulam.
Of the 470 studios to be set up, 170 have already been completed. The project is being implemented through Keltron. A total of 170 studios have been set up in two phases. Another 150 would be established in the third and fourth phases.
The video conferencing facility is being set up to address practical difficulties in producing remand prisoners before courts and to ensure smooth conduct of court proceedings. The transportation of prisoners between jails and courts has been a challenging task for the force.
Also, many policemen are assigned for this duty on a regular basis. With the video conferencing facility, these issues can be addressed in addition to cutting down unnecessary expenditure. The new facility would be enforced by protecting the rights of prisoners and under the court's supervision, said a communication from the Chief Minister's Office.
Already the state holds the top position in terms of court infrastructure in the country. The new video conferencing facility would be another major achievement for the state, said the CMO.
NGO The Vidhi Centre for Legal Policy had declared Kerala first in court infrastructure based on various parameters including hygiene, security in courts, facilities to display court proceedings and other similar matters.