A life convict at the Madurai Central Prison has been granted four day leave on parole to meet his sick father by the Madras High Court (Madurai Bench). A division bench comprising Justices N Paul Vasanthakumar and P Devadass also directed the Government to bear the expenditure for police guards escorting the prisoner on the four days on humanitarian grounds.
The prison authorities had refused parole for the convict Muthu on the grounds that his appeal against his conviction was pending in the Supreme Court. The judges pointed out that there was no provision in the Tamil Nadu Suspension of Sentence Rules, 1982 that bars leave for life convicts whose appeal is pending in the SC. Muthu was serving life term since 2006 for allegedly murdering his relatives during a family dispute. He had sought 10 days emergency leave to call on his ailing father Muniyasamy, who is suffering from diabetes and asthma. When the case came up for hearing, the special government pleader submitted that Muthu would be granted four day parole provided he paid for the security expenditure.
However when the petitioner’s counsel Alagumani pointed out that the convict hailed from a poor family, the judges observed: “The longing of a lifer to see his ailing father has to be considered under humanitarian grounds. Rule 16 of the TN Suspension of Sentence Rules, 1982, permits security escort to penury stricken convicts at government cost.” The court also directed all Superintendents of Prison to consider the pending leave application of the convicts.