“If one can contest for elections from within the prison, why can’t they vote too?" ask law students Prerna Singh, Praveen Chaudhary and Atul Kumar Dubey.
The three fourth year students of Galgotias University, Greater Noida, Uttar Pradesh filed a public interest litigation with the Delhi High Court, challenging the constitutionality of Section 62 (5) of the Representation of People Act, reported Vice India.
Representatives from the Ministry of Law and Justice, the Ministry of Home Affairs, along with Director General (Prisons) of Tihar Central Jail and the Election Commission of India (ECI) were present during the hearing. Section 62 bans people “confined in a prison...or in the lawful custody of the police” from voting in any elections.
While hearing the matter on 8 March, the Delhi High Court asked the central government, EC and the director general of Tihar Jail to file a reply on the plea seeking voting rights for prisoners across the country, reported Outlook.
‘No Matter How Big the Crime, Everyone Should Have Human Rights’
The trio have also sought a direction from the court to provide facilities and amenities for prisoners to cast their votes from within the jails premises, reported LiveLaw.
Speaking to Vice India, Chaudhary said, “We are concerned with human rights. Whoever it is, no matter how big the crime is, they should have human rights.”