Mumbai: The Bombay High Court on Monday asked the Maharashtra government to clarify whether its February notification on amendment to Prisons Rules (Furlough and Parole) 1959 is restricted only to furlough or includes parole as well.
While parole (temporary release from prison) is granted to a convict in an emergency such as a death in the family or marriage of relatives, furlough is generally given to a prisoner once in a year on certain conditions and criteria.
The amendment in question had sought that convicts serving sentence for offences related to terrorist activities cannot avail furlough leave in view of a notification issued by the Home Department on February 23, 2012.
The High Court has sought the state`s reply following an application filed for grant of parole to 1993 serial blasts convict Salim Rahim Shaikh.
Shaikh had written to court from jail seeking parole for the purpose of arranging his daughter`s marriage.
However, the state government had placed on record the notification regarding the amended rule (4)(13) of the Prisons (Bombay Furlough and Parole) Rules, 1959, which states that prisoners convicted in crimes related to terrorist activities shall not be granted furlough.
The petitioner`s lawyer Farhana Shah argued that Shaikh be granted parole as he had availed it in the past as well.
A division bench of Justice A M Khanwilkar and Justice A R Joshi, however, stated that having availed parole in the past could not be a ground for challenging the decision of the appropriate authority in view of the recent amendment.
Shah, however, contended today that the amendment pertains to grant of furlough and not parole.