Trying to give 30-min legal interviews twice a week for Pinjra Tod member
New Delhi: Tihar Jail authorities have now informed the Delhi High Court that efforts will be made to arrange for two legal interviews of 30 minutes each via video conferencing twice a week for Pinjra Tod member Natasha Narwal, who is currently lodged in the prison, awaiting trial in several of the North-East Delhi riots cases.
This comes after Narwal had moved a petition in the high court, saying that there was "large-scale violence" inside the jail on June 16 and that legal interviews with lawyers had been suspended. While jail authorities had clarified days after the petition that there was no "large-scale" violence as alleged by the petitioner, on Monday the jail had submitted in court that several foreign inmates had turned violent, injuring 25 people, including 10 staff who tried to control them.
The prison authorities also agreed to let Narwal source books and study material from outside the jail, provided it did not infract any provisions of the jail rules. Narwal had sought that study materials be allowed to her to complete her M.Phil, which she is undertaking from the Jawaharlal Nehru University.
Delhi government standing counsel (criminal) Rahul Mehra had appeared on behalf of Tihar Jail authorities on Tuesday and assured the court that provisions would be made to ensure Narwal is given headphones so that jail officials can maintain a visual distance during the legal interview and still remain out of earshot.
Narwal's lawyer, Advocate Adit S Pujari submitted that at the time of video conferencing, jail officials are also present besides the woman due to which she is unable to communicate with him properly. He said as per the jail manual, the jail officials can be within the sight but out of hearing.
Meanwhile, Tihar jail authorities have said that video conference facilities for prisoners to speak with their lawyers will be made available to all prisoners.