The Delhi High Court has directed the Delhi government to look into the aspect of providing compensation to children whose parents are incarcerated in Delhi’s jails.A bench of Acting Chief Justice Gita Mittal and Justice C Hari Shankar directed the Centre and the Social Welfare Department, government of NCT, for the speedy implementation of the Scheme for Financial Sustenance, Education and Welfare of Children of Incarcerated Parents, 2014.The court’s direction comes after it was informed about the issue of children not getting financial assistance, as they had not resided in the Capital for five years. According to the scheme, the children should have stayed in the city for at least five years before availing of compensation.”We expect the government of NCT, Social Welfare to look into the matter specially the need for bringing a scheme where the children whose parents or any other dependant member are lodged in the jail,” the court said.The court directed the Delhi government to file its response in this regard within six weeks from Monday. The court was hearing a host of matters pertaining to prisoners lodged in Tihar jail.During the course of hearing, advocate Rahul Mehra appearing for the Delhi government, informed the court that a new amended jail manual is already underway and 13 out of the 16 chapters have been drafted.”Thirteen out of the 16 chapters of the new amended jail manual have already been finalised and the rest will be done as soon as possible. This new jail manual will also address the issue of discrimination of women prisoners of not being entitled to open and semi-open jails,” Mehra said.Following this, the court noted that the respondents, including the Delhi government “are rectifying the discrimination of women”. It directed that the court be informed about the completion and implementation of the new jail manual.Earlier, the court had directed the DG (Prisons), city government and the police to implement a system which would let one know about the records of undertrials lodged in the jail.VACANT POSTSThe court was informed that there are 110 sanctioned posts for doctors in the jail premises out of which just 47 of them are filled up. There are 108 sanctioned posts for paramedical staff and 92 of them are physically filled.
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