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                                                                                                                    REMISSION

I.                   Introduction

Remission is a concession, which can be granted to prisoners by the State Government or by the Head of the Prison Department and Superintendent of Prisons. In a country committed to proportionality as the overarching principle of sentencing, as our country claims to be, the early release of prisoners represents something of a triumph for pragmatism over principle. Remission system aims at the reformation of a prisoner. The scheme is intended to ensure prison discipline and good conduct on the part of the prisoners, and to encourage them to learning and better work culture, with the prospect of their early release from prison as an incentive. 

A.                Purpose

Remission is intended to be an incentive for good behaviour and work. It should be granted on the basis of an inmate’s behaviour, work and general response to various institutional activities

B.                 Kinds of Remission

Remission will be of the following types:

(1)Ordinary remission

(2) Special remission

(3) State Government remission

II.                Ordinary Remission

Authority to grant ordinary remission: The Superintendent, or an officer nominated by him on his behalf, is authorized to grant ordinary remission.

Eligibility:

 The following types of convicted prisoners shall be eligible for ordinary remission:

Prisoners having substantive sentences of two months and more
 Prisoners, sentenced to simple imprisonment for two months or more, who volunteer to work
Prisoners employed on prison maintenance services requiring them to work on Sundays and Holidays, e.g. sweeping, cooking etc., irrespective of the length of their sentence,
Prisoners admitted for less than one month in hospital for treatment or convalescence after an ailment or injury not caused wilfully. (Those admitted for such purpose for more than one month should be entitled to remission for good conduct only).
It will be the responsibility of the prison administration to provide work to all eligible prisoners. If for any reason the prison administration fails to do so the prisoners who are otherwise eligible for remission for work should be granted it as per their normal entitlement under the orders of the Inspector General of Prisons.

The following types of prisoners should not be eligible for ordinary remission:

Prisoners having substantive sentence of less than two months,
Prisoners sentenced in default of payment of fine only,
Prisoners whose sentence is reduced to less that two months (in such cases remission already earned, if any, should stand forfeited),
In the case of prisoners transferred from one prison to another on disciplinary grounds, during the period of their stay in the latter prison,
Prisoners debarred from remission as punishment,
Prisoners specifically debarred from remission under any law or rule, and
Prisoners out on special leave for the duration of such leave.

  

III.             Special remission
A.                Authority to grant special remission:
The concerned Superintendent of the prison and Inspector General/Head of the Prisons Department will be the competent authorities to grant special remission.

 

B.                 Criteria to grant special remission:
Meritorious work by inmates should be rewarded by grant of special remission in addition to the annual good conduct remission to create a spirit of healthy competition among prisoners. Such special remission may be granted to prisoners eligible for ordinary remission on the following considerations:

Saving the life of a government employee, a prison visitor or an inmate,
Protecting a government employee or prison visitor or inmate from     physical violence or danger,
Preventing or assisting in prevention of escape of prisoners, apprehending prisoners attempting to escape, or giving material information about any plan or attempt by a prisoner, or a group of prisoners, to escape,
Assisting prison officials in handling emergencies like fire, outbreak of riots and strike,
Reporting of, or assisting in, prevention of serious breach of prison regulations,
Outstanding contribution in cultural activities or education,
Specially good work in industry, agriculture or any other work programme, or in vocational training.

 

IV.             State Government Remission

Remission granted by the State Government shall be called State Government Remission.

A.                Eligibility:
The State Government remission can be awarded to such prisoners, or categories of prisoners, as the State Government may decide. In case of prisoners who, at the time of general grant of State Government remission, are released on temporary or emergency release, specific orders of the State Government about the award of this remission to such prisoners are necessary.
B.                 Remission Committee:

The Remission Committee of each institution will consist of:

Superintendent-in charge of the institution – Chairman,
Deputy Superintendent or senior most prison officer available in the institution,
Assistant Superintendent/Deputy Jailor/Assistant Jailor in charge of remission section,
Officer in charge of Industries/ Vocational Training.

 

C.                 Functions of Remission Committee

The functions of this committee are:

To attend to all matter pertaining to remission,
To recommend cases of prisoners to the Inspector General/Head of Prisons Department for the grant of special remission as per provisions of this manual, and
To grant special remission as per provisions of this manual.
Procedure

The members of the committee should assist the Superintendent in all matters pertaining to the award of remission. The decision of the Superintendent should be treated as final. The Remission Committee should meet on fixed days in the last week of every month, or as and when required.

 

Notes:

In view of the importance of remission work, it is essential that the committee meets as per fixed schedule so that remission may be granted in time. Special remission should be granted leaving a margin of at least seven days prior to a prisoner’s release.
Entries regarding remission should be made, under proper attestation of the Superintendent, in the Remission Register and the History Ticket of the prisoner concerned as soon as it is granted.
Prisoners with substantive sentences from two months to five years should be sanctioned remission each month while those sentenced to more than five years (including life convicts) should be granted remission once in a quarter.
Ordinary remission should be calculated for full calendar months. It should not be granted for a fraction of a calendar month.
Special remission may be granted for any fraction of a year accordingly.
Maximum limit of remission which a prisoner can earn should be half of the substantive sentence (to be calculated from the date of his conviction).
Grant of remission to prisoners sentenced by court martial should be on the same principles as those applicable to other prisoners.

 

Life Convicts: In the case of a prisoner serving more than one life sentence, twenty years shall be treated as the total of all his sentences for calculating remission. Grant of remission to a life convict shall not mean actual remission in his sentence. When his case will be examined by the Review Board, the remission to his credit will be one of the factors on the basis of which the review of his sentence will be considered.
Miscellaneous

Prisoners sentenced by court martial shall be granted ordinary remission of the period they pass in transit, or in military custody, before their admission in prison on the same scale as laid down in these rules.
In the case of a prisoner, transferred from one prison to another while undergoing imprisonment, the period spent by him in the first prison, excluding the period spent as an under trial prisoner, shall be calculated along with the period spent by him in the second prison, for remission.
Ordinary remission shall be calculated from the first day of the calendar month after the date of the prisoner’s sentence. Ordinary remission shall not be granted for the broken period of a calendar month. A prisoner, unless sentenced on the first day of a month, will not get remission for the month in which he has been sentenced
Period spent outside the prison, such as release on leave/parole which are included as part of a sentence, should not be treated as broken periods. During such periods the prisoner shall be eligible for earning ordinary remission. For periods spent outside the prison which are not included as parts of a sentence (such as, bail, emergency release, escape and extradition) prisoners shall not be eligible for earning remission. In such cases, the prisoners should be considered as eligible to earn remission from the first day of the calendar month following the date of their re-admission.

 

In all such cases the date for eligibility for annual good conduct remission will be duly postponed. Prisoners who have been released on bail, or whose sentence have been temporarily suspended, shall, on their readmission to prison, be credited with any remission they may have earned before their release on bail, or to the suspension of the sentence. They will be brought under the remission system again on the first day of the calendar month after their readmission

 

Removal and Revocation of Prisoner from Remission

The State Government, the Inspector General of Prisons and the Superintendent may remove any prisoner from remission, for a specified period, for committing prison offences. The Superintendent may remove a prisoner from remission for three months. However, the sanction of the Inspector General will be necessary for such removal from remission for any period exceeding three months.

With prior sanction of the Inspector General the Superintendent may re-admit any prisoner to remission who has been removed from there. The prisoner who is re-admitted to remission shall earn remission under these rules from the commencement of the month following his re-admission.

Conditions for Forfeiture of Remission

Remission earned by a prisoner may be forfeited by the State Government or the Inspector General of Prisons or the Head of Prisons Department or the Superintendent of Prisons;

If the prisoner is convicted of an offence committed after admission to prison, under sections 147, 148, 152, 224, 302, 304, 304-A, 306. 307, 308, 232, 324, 325, 326, 327, 332, 333,352, 353 or 377 of the India Penal Code or convicted of an assault committed on a prison official, a prison visitor, a prisoner, or any other government employee after admission to prison. All the ordinary and special remission, of whatever kind, earned by him under these rules up to the date of the said conviction may be forfeited in part, or in whole, with the sanction of the Inspector General of Prisons or the Head of the Prisons Department,
For prison offences Superintendent is empowered to forfeit earned remission up to 30 days for one offence. Earned remission beyond 30 days may be forfeited with the sanction of the Inspector General of Prisons or the Head of the Prisons Department.

Note:

All entries about forfeiture of remission shall be promptly made in the remission sheet and in the Remission Register.
State Government remission is granted on occasions of national importance or public rejoicing under Section 432 of Criminal Procedure Code. An order of unconditional remission of such sentence under this section cannot be rescinded except in cases of fraud or mistake in its grant.

 

RELEVANT CASES

Ram Shankar vs State Of Madhya Pradesh on 23 September, 1980

The appellant Ram Shankar was tried and convicted by the Sessions Judge Bench under Sections 392/397, I.P.C. and sentenced under the latter count to seven years' rigorous imprisonment which is the minimum punishment prescribed for that offence. His appeal was dismissed by the High Court. He has now come before us in appeal by special leave under Article 136 of the Constitution,

The prosecution case against the appellant, as it emerges from the record was that on Dassara Day, the 17th October, 1972, ten persons including P.W. 1 and P.W. 3 of village Maniriban and P.W. 2 a resident of village Aslama, came to Damoh to see procession of Goddess Kali. After seeing the procession at about 3 a.m. in the night these persons came to the booking office at the Railway Station Damoh as they had to buy tickets for taking the train to Aslama. There was a big crowd at the Booking Office. All these eleven persons gave 35 paise each to Ram Singh (P.W. 1) and asked him to purchase tickets for all of them. Ram Singh then stood in the queue before the ticket window. He was carrying Rs. 3.85 in the palm of his left hand. While Ram Singh was counting the money the appellant suddenly appeared. He was carrying a naked sword. The appellant touched the palm of Ram Singh with the tip of his sword, and lifted the money. The appellant then carried away the money and entered the Booking Office. P.W. 1 informed about the incident to constable Shaikh Karim (P.W. 4) who was on duty at the Railway Station. P.W. 1 also informed the Station Master, On receiving a telephonic call from the Station Master the policemen arrived in a lorry and disarmed, arrested and took away Ram Shanker-Appellant.

The plea of the appellant at the trial was that liquor was administered to him against his will by Ram Gopal and Haricharan of Damon as a result of which he was incapable of knowing the nature of the act that he might have committed, In short, the defence was under Section 65, I.P.C. The appellant did not examine Ram Gopal and Haricharan and otherwise failed to establish his defence.

Technically the offence committed by the appellant was one under Section 397, I.P.C. as he had used a deadly weapon in committing robbery and the courts had no option but to impose the minimum sentence of seven years' imprisonment. But there were several mitigating circumstances in the case. There was nothing on the record that the appellant was a person of bad antecedents. He was a primary school teacher. The amount alleged to have been robbed was a trivial amount of Rs. 3.85. He did not cause physical hurt to anybody. He did not make any attempt to rob the cash in the booking office, where he quietly remained standing for a sufficient time. He did not resist his arrest. According to the Station Master, Rishi Kumar Khare (P.W. 5), constable Shaikh Karim had informed him that the appellant had given his name as Shanker S/o Nand Lal of Damoh. Thus, the appellant made no attempt to conceal his real identity. We, therefore, think that this is an appropriate case where the Executing Government may in exercise of its power of clemency under Section 432 of the CrPC, 1973, remit or reduce the sentence of the appellant. With this observation, we dismiss this appeal. The appellant is granted three weeks' time to surrender, to his bail bonds to serve out the sentence inflicted on him.

State Of Karnataka vs Hemareddy Alias Vemareddy And Anr on 27 January, 1981

VARADARAJAN,J.  This appeal by special leave has been filed by the State of Karnataka against the judgment of a Division Bench of the Karnataka High Court in Criminal Appeals Nos. 324 and 335 of 1973 against the acquittal of Hemareddy alias Vemareddy (A-1) in Crl. A. No. 324 of 1973 and against the order in Crl. A. No. 335 of 1973 modifying the sentence awarded by the learned Sessions Judge, Raichur to Pyatal Bhimakka (A-2) in Sessions Case No. 25/72.

The facts of the case: One Narsappa is the son of one Thimmaiah who had an elder brother Nagappa Thimmaiah and Nagappa were the sons of one Thayappa. Nagappa's wife was one Bhimakka alias Bhieamma. Thimaiaha and Nagappa lived for sometime in Underaldoddi. Nagappa purchased lands bearing Survey Nos. 93, 94 and 96 in Underaldoodi. Those lands were in the possession and enjoyment of Narsappa's father Thimmaiah. Subsequently, Nagappa and his wife left Underaldoddi and settled down in Alkur village. While Nagappa was living in Alkur village, he mortgaged the aforesaid lands with possession to one Kurbar Bhimayya, the father of Hemareddy alias Vemareddy, A-1. According to the terms of the mortgage, Kurbar Bhimayya was to be in possession of the lands for twenty years and surrender possession thereof to the Owner after the expiry of the period. Subsequently, Nagappa and his wife as well as Nagappa's brother Thimmaiah came and settled down at Raichur. Bhimakka alias Bhisamma, the wife of Nagappa, died in or about 1953 and Nagappa died two or three years later. Nagappa's brother also died leaving behind him his son Narsappa as the only heir in the family. Meanwhile Kurbar Bhimayya, the mortgagee and father of Hemareddy alias Vemareddy (A-1) died. Hemareddy alias Vemareddy continued in possession of the lands. Narsappa, son of Nagappa's brother Thimmaiah executed a will in favour of the complainant Narsappa Eliger, bequeathing the aforesaid lands to him. Narsappa Eliger, the legatee under the will of Thimmaiah's son Narsappa, approached Hemareddy alias Vemareddy, the son of the mortgagee Kurbar Bhimayya, who was in possession of the lands and requested him to surrender possession of the lands on the ground that the period of twenty years had expired. Then Hemareddy alias Vemareddy informed the complainant Narsappa Eliger that he would consider his request a few days later as it was harvesting time. Finding that there was no response from Hemareddy alias Vemareddy, Narsappa Eliger wrote a letter, for which, according to the prosecution, Hemareddy alias Vemareddy sent the reply, Ex. P-3 Subsequently, Narsappa Eliger filed a suit for redemption of the mortgage. Subsequent to the institution of the suit, Narsappa Eliger came to know from Shivareddy (P.W. 12) that Hemareddy alias Vemareddy has purchased the lands in question from Pyatal Bhimakka (A-2) and another and that A-2 had impersonated the real owner Bhimakka, wife of Nagappa, who, as stated earlier, had died in or about 1953. Thereupon, Narsappa Eliger made inquiries in the Office of the concerned Sub-Registrar and learned that the sale deed had been registered on 10-11-1970. After obtaining a registration copy of the sale deed and after making inquiries at Alkur Narsappa Eliger learnt that Pyatal Bhimakka (A-2) had no properties of her own. Narsappa Eliger thereafter filed a criminal complaint in the Court, which was referred to the Police. After investigation, the Sub- Inspector of Police, P.W. 21 filed a charge-sheet against both the accused and two others alleging that they had conspired to cheat Narsappa Eliger and to deprive him of the lands and that in pursuance of that conspiracy they put forward Pyatal Bhimakka as Nagappa's wife Bhimakka and got the sale deed executed by her and they thereby committed offences under ss. 120B, 193, 465, 467, 468 and 420 read with s. 114 of the Indian Penal Code. Only Hemareddy alias Vemareddy and Pyatal Bhimakka, A-1 and A-2 were committed to the Court of Sessions at Raichur, and they were found guilty and convicted and sentenced as mentioned above.

We were taken through the judgment of the learned Judges of the High Court. We are satisfied that the learned Judges were justified in coming to the conclusion on the evidence that Hemareddy alias Vemareddy is guilty under s 467 read with s. 144 I.P.C. and that Pyatal Bhimakka is guilty under s. 467 I.P.C. Since we agree with the learned Judges of the High Court , it is unnecessary for us to refer to the evidence relied upon by the learned Judges for coming to the conclusion.

The effect of the allegations in the complaint preferred by the complainant is that the petitioner has caused this will to come into existence intending that such will may cause the Judge before whom the suit is filed to form an opinion that the will is a genuine one and, therefore, his minor daughter is entitled to the property. The allegation, therefore, in the complaint will undoubtedly fall under s. 192, I.P.C. It will, therefore, amount to an offence under s. 193, I.P.C., i.e. fabricating false evidence for the purpose of being used in the judicial proceeding. There is no doubt that the facts disclosed will also amount to an offence under ss. 467 and 471 I.P.C. For prosecuting this petitioner for an offence under ss. 467 and 471, a complaint by the court may not be necessary as under s. 195(1)(c), Criminal P.C. a complaint may be made only when it is committed by a party to any proceeding in any court.

Mr. Jayarama Aiyar does not give up his contention that the petitioner, though he appears only a guardian of the minor girl, is still a party to the proceeding. But it is unnecessary to go into the question at the present moment and I reserve my opinion on the question whether the guardian can be a party to a proceeding or not, as this case can be disposed of on the other point, viz., that when the allegations amount to an offence under s. 193, I.P.C., a complaint of court is necessary under s. 195(1)(b), Criminal P.C. and this cannot be evaded by prosecuting the accused for an offence for which a complaint of court is not necessary.

It is not possible to agree with the learned Judges of the High Court that the complaint in this case given by the private individual Narsappa Eliger, P.W. 3 against Hemareddy alias Vemareddy for the offence under s. 467 read with s. 114 I.P.C. is not cognizable and that s. 195(1)(b) of the Criminal Procedure Code is attracted so far as Hemareddy alias Vemareddy is concerned. The document forged by Pyatal Bhimakka, A-2 is a sale deed dated 10-11-70. The suit for redemption of the mortgage was filed by the complainant Narsappa Eliger.

It is quite clear, however, from the very nature of the offence alleged against the present petitioner that if the offence was committed, it was committed in relation to the proceeding in which those three persons were to be examined as witnesses, and it is difficult to understand how it could be said that the present proceedings against the petitioner could go on without the sanction of the Court before which these proceedings are pending at present, and in relation to which the offence is said to have been committed. The expression used in s. 195(1) (b) is wide enough to cover such a proceeding. We, therefore, quash the present proceedings, without prejudice to any proceeding that may be taken after obtaining the necessary sanction.

We are of the opinion that it is not possible to agree with the view of the learned Judges expressed in that case that even when the offence of instigating the witnesses to give false evidence was committed in relation to a proceeding which was not actually pending in the court but was only under contemplation the provisions of s. 195(1) (b) of the Code of Criminal Procedure would be attracted. The forged sale deed dated 10-11-70 was not at all tendered by Hemareddy alias Vemareddy in the redemption suit filed by the complainant Narsappa Eliger on 17-11-70 at any stage of the proceedings in that suit.

The appellate court is empowered after hearing the parties to direct the withdrawal of the complaint or as the case may be, itself to make the complaint. It is no doubt true that quite often-if not almost invariably-the documents are forged for being used or produced in evidence in court before the proceedings are started.

In the present case, the offence of abetment of forgery was complete when the forged sale deed dated 10-11-70 was fabricated and registered. But no offence under s. 193 I.P.C. falling within the scope of s. 195(1)(b) of Cr.P.C. could be stated to have been committed.It would follow that no complaint by the court for prosecuting Hemareddy alias Vemareddy for the offence under s. 467 read with s. 114 I.P.C. is required, and he could be validly convicted for that offence on the complaint given by the private individual.

We are, therefore, of the opinion that learned Judges of the High Court were not right in law in holding that the complaint in this case was totally not maintainable against Hemareddy alias Vemareddy in view of the provisions of s. 195(1) (b) of the Code of Criminal Procedure, and in not only acquitting Hemareddy alias Vemareddy of the offence under s. 467 read with s. 114 I.P.C. but also in finding that he has committed an offence punishable under s. 193 I.P.C. We accordingly dismiss the appeal to that extent but allow the appeal in part so far as Hemareddy alias Vemareddy is concerned and find him guilty under s. 467 read with s. 114 I.P.C. and convict him and sentence him to undergo R.I. for one year and also pay a fine of Rs. 500/- and in default to undergo R.I. for three months.

 Appeal dismissed.