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NHRC issues notice to Tihar officials on undertrial’s death

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) on Wednesday issued notice to Tihar Jail administration over an undertrial's death while cleaning a sewer in the prison premises.

According to an NHRC statement, the rights panel issued the notice after taking suo-motu cognisance of a media report that the undertrial prisoner, Bittoo (40), died of suffocation while cleaning a sewer in Tihar Jail No 1.

He had been lodged in the jail since 28 September, 2012 in connection with a theft case.
The inmate, along with four others, had reportedly entered the sewer without helmet and other
safety equipments.

While the four others were rescued, Bittoo died on the spot of suffocation on 15 May.
The incident came to light almost three weeks later when media highlighted it, the statement said.
Issuing notice to director general (prison), Delhi, the Commission has called for a report in the matter within four weeks.

The DG was also directed to inform the Commission whether the inmates of the jail, in general, were
asked to undertake risky jobs, such as, cleaning of sewer, and if not, the name of the official, who deputed the inmates to clean the sewer line.

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