Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa today urged her Andhra Pradesh counterpart N Chandrababu Naidu to arrange for legal assistance to Tamil prisoners jailed in that state in connection with “alleged forest related offences”.
As on October 13, 2015, a total of 516 persons were undergoing incarceration in Andhra Pradesh jails and most of them were “poor illiterate tribals and labourers hired by contractors”, she said in a letter to Naidu.
Many of the 516 persons, although accused of offences under non-bailable sections of the Andhra Pradesh Forest Act 1969 and the Indian Penal Code, were legally eligible for bail as the charge sheets have not been laid within the statutory 90-day period, she said.
“Unfortunately, they are still in jail and unable to move their bail application due to penury and lack of appropriate legal assistance.
“I request you to kindly arrange for appropriate legal assistance for these poor labourers through the State Legal Services Authority and also to facilitate the process of their release on bail, wherever they are eligible under the law,” she said.