Don’t segregate prisoners on the basis of caste, religion: Govt

Syllabus: GS-II, Subject: Polity, Topic: Rights issues, Issue: Prisons

Context: States and UTs told to remove discriminatory provisions in Prison Manuals by the Ministry of Home Affairs( MHA).


  • The Constitution of India, Articles 14 to 18, prohibited any kind of discrimination on the grounds of religion, race, caste, place of birth etc.
  • The Model Prison Manual, 2016, explicitly prohibited caste and religion-based discrimination of prisoners.

Model Prison Manual, 2016:

  • Published by the Ministry of Home Affairs.
  • Outlines guidelines to bring more uniformity to prison regulations for the administration of prisons and the treatment of prisoners .
  • It is not a binding law, but rather a set of guidelines .
Prelims Connect:  Prisons is a subject under state list, hence states have exclusive powers to make laws related.

+1 Advantage for Mains (Data Point):

Overcrowding of prisons: The prisons in India are overcrowded to the extent of 131.4%.


1.      Inadequate infrastructure,

2.     Lengthy period of pre-trial detention. Of the total prison population, under trial prisoners constitute 75.8%.

3.     Strict sentencing practices without the provision of fine and community service.


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