Pakistan Supreme Court Orders the Arrest of Prisoners Released Earlier Due to Coronavirus Spread

In order to combat the spread of the latest COVID-19 coronavirus, the Supreme Court of Pakistan ordered the arrest of all the sub-trial prisoners released last month under lower judicial orders.

The court reversed the lower courts ‘decision and ruled the verdict invalid on their release. A five-member wide bench, headed by Pakistan’s Chief Justice Justice, Mr Gulzar Ahmed, declared the decision.

The bail granted to people involved in corruption and drugs cases should be cancelled, the court said.

The verdict, however, says that the prisoners who are sick or have any disability can be released if they were sentenced to jail for three years or less.

Prisoners who have completed their sentences but failed to pay the fine can also be released. Also, women and children who have completed 75 per cent of their sentence can be released. However, prisoners accused of violence against women and children won’t be released, the court ruled, according to Samma TV.

The Islamabad High Court’s decision on the release of prisoners was not according to the law, said the top judge, adding that the Sindh High Court passed a similar order.

The court had also directed that better facilities to be set up at Taftan border to screen patients and to keep them in isolation.

“Proper quarantine centres and isolation wards should be set up at Taftan, Torkhan and Chaman borders. A quarantine centre should be set-up within the next two-weeks. Each person should have a separate room, bathroom and good food,” Justice Gulzar said.

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