Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said the government has taken measures for quick disposal of the cases so that alleged individuals do not languish in jail without trial for a long time. Steps have been taken to know the actual number of innocent inmates who have been languishing in jail for a long time. The PM said, “The inmates, who are in jail for no crime can seek compensation from the authorities concerned, even from the state if they desire. There is a provision in the law for it.”
The PM further said, “Innocent inmates should be released immediately. Steps have been taken to release them with the help of some non-government organizations and the government bodies. The process is going on.” The PM said this while replying to question from Jatiya Party MP Nurul Islam Milon (Comilla – 8) during the PM’s question - answer session in the House. (The Daily Observer, dated March 9, 2017)
PM’s version reminds us a Bangla movie entitled ‘Sabar Uparey’ (Above Everything) which I enjoyed during my student life. The 1955 Indian Bengali film directed by Agradoot was based on A.J. Cronin’s 1953 novel, “Beyond This Place”. It starred acclaimed actors Uttam Kumar and Suchitra Sen in leading roles. Chhabi Biswas, Pahadi Sanyal and Nitish Mukherjee also play important roles in the movie.
Prashanta Chatterjee (Chhabi Biswas) is sentenced to life imprisonment after the alleged murder of Hemangini, a lady based in Krishnanagar whom he is accused of loving and then dumping and murdering heinously.
Twelve years later, his only son Shankar (Uttam Kumar), who lives with his mother (Sobha Sen) in Patna, comes to Krishnanagar to prove his father’s innocence and bring the actual perpetrators to justice. There he falls in love with Rita (Suchitra Sen), a girl who too had a life history of injustice. Together, they secretly conjure up various evidences against the actual criminal, a government lawyer(Nitish Mukherjee) who originally fought the case against his father 12 years back. In all this, they get the help of Rita’s journalist brother (Pahadi Sanyal) who, through his articles and friends in the Press, gathers public momentum to finally reopen the case.
Meanwhile with 12 years of wretched life in the prisons and the thought that his wife and child had perished due to poverty, he seems to lose his mental balance. However when brought in the midst of his family, sense and wellness returns to him.
In that movie, the hero Chhabi Biswas, the powerful actor of silver screen, was put in jail on charge of a false murder case. After 12 years in jail the court acquitted him turning down the murder allegation as false. On hearing the verdict Chhabi Biswas shouted raising a question, ‘Give my 12 years back to me.’
It will not be irrelevant to mention here that Chhabi Biswas played the role of Rahmat in ‘Kabuliwala’, a movie directed by Tapan Sinha, based on the story of Rabindranath Tagore. For this role he had been in Kabul for 3 (three) years to get acquainted with their culture.
We appreciate Prime Minister’s concern over innocent prisoners who have been languishing in jail for no crime for a long time. The PM deserves high accolade for steps taken by the government to release the innocent prisoners immediately.
Innocent prisoners may get compensation, but will not get back their life. They may get compensation from the state, but it will be the money of taxpayers who are not responsible for their jail for no crime. Persons who are responsible for their jail for no crime should pay compensation.They should be punished for the sufferings to the innocent prisoners who will not get back their life.