Presidential pardon for around 600 prisoners | Sunday Observer

Presidential pardon for around 600 prisoners

29 November, 2020

Around 600 prison inmates serving sentences for minor offences will be given a Presidential pardon, Commissioner General of Prisons Thushara Upuldeniya said.

He said they are currently collecting data on eligible cases and it was too early to announce the exact number of inmates who will be pardoned. “In the next two to three days we will check court cases and release the inmates, according to the guidelines received,” Upuldeniya said. The step was taken following an outbreak of Covid-19 within the prisons.

Upuldeniya said 910 including 50 prison officers had contracted the virus in prisons.

State Minister of Prison Reforms and Prisoners’ Rehabilitation, Sudarshini Fernandopulle told the Sunday Observer that most of the prisoners, about 7,000 are remand prisoners, most of them for drug offences.

Fernandopulle said steps are being taken to prosecute those having illicit drugs weighing under 2g as drug users and not dealers.