A jail is a facility for detaining those who have violated the law. Prisons exist to reform and rehabilitate their inmates. Depravity and abuse are routinely hidden behind closed doors in jails, endangering the lives of those housed there. The problems associated with incarceration are magnified to a greater extent in the case of female prisoners. A male-dominated prison system leaves women more vulnerable, especially in ordinary jails where both men and women are housed. At the end of 2010, women accounted for 4.1% of those incarcerated, according to data from the National Crime Records Bureau. At the end of 2013, there were 18188 people incarcerated in Indian prisons, with 3396 of them being women, or 18.67 percent of the total. In addition, 34 female inmates died in 2010, five of them committing suicide, according to the research. In numerous jails across the country, sources say, torture and other cruel tactics are being used against both women and men. It’s also worth noting that statistics are available on cruelty to females in other state facilities, including prisons and hospitals.
The golden triangle of our Constitution protects and safeguards the rights of prisoners in India. In this article, we will try to discuss the various safeguards that are available to prisoners, and simultaneously, we will find out the special safeguards that are made only for female prisoners. This article is going to be very helpful in understanding the various facets of the right to life with respect to prison rights that are guaranteed to a prisoner. I have divided the article into two parts. The first part would talk about the rights guaranteed to the prisoners under Article 21, and the second part would talk about the present condition of the women prisoners and some suggestions from my side that might help in improving their situation. There is no reported case law that specifically talks about the treatment meted out to female prisoners and about the rights available to them in jail. The article is also going to discuss a number of case laws that would help us gain an in-depth understanding of the concept of the right to life from the aspect of prison rights.