Traversing the Right to Access to Justice for Prisoners Behind the Bars: A Call for Reform

Publication Information

Journal Title: Journal of Legal Studies & Research
Author(s): Jaydeep Findoria & Om Prakash Pandey
Published On: 17/04/2024
Volume: 10
Issue: 2
First Page: 71
Last Page: 87
ISSN: 2455-2437
Publisher: The Law Brigade Publisher

DOI Not Allotted [Get DOI]

Cite this Article

Jaydeep Findoria & Om Prakash Pandey, Traversing the Right to Access to Justice for Prisoners Behind the Bars: A Call for Reform , Volume 10 Issue 2, Journal of Legal Studies & Research, 71-87, Published on 17/04/2024, Available at


In the discourse surrounding criminal justice reforms, the focus often gravitates towards transformative and reformative measures aimed at rehabilitating offenders and reintegrating them into society. Among the myriad rights accorded to prisoners, one fundamental aspect deserving more attention is their right to access to justice, particularly within the confines of correctional facilities. This paper thrives into the intricacies of prisoners’ rights to access to justice within jail settings, shedding light on the challenges they face and proposing viable solutions to address these pressing concerns. Central to the discussion is the dilemma posed by crimes committed within prisons, where the custodial authority assumes the role of both arbiter and custodian. This raises critical questions about the application of principles of natural justice and the assurance of fair treatment for incarcerated individuals. Often, prisoners find themselves reliant on intermediaries to represent their interests in court, highlighting a systemic deficiency in ensuring direct access to judicial redressal mechanisms. Drawing upon a dearth of doctrinal research on this subject, and with future perspective of dealing empirical comprehension, the paper seeks to fill a significant gap in the discourse on prisoners’ rights. It underscores the urgent need to develop mechanisms that facilitate prisoners’ access to judicial authorities, thereby safeguarding their right to a fair trial and legal representation. Moreover, it advocates for the establishment of separate judicial mechanisms within jails to adjudicate cases arising within these closed environments, thereby mitigating the inherent challenges of access and representation faced by incarcerated individuals. At the heart of the paper’s argument lies the recognition of prisoners as individuals entitled to the full spectrum of human rights, including the right to access justice. It underscores the imperative for stakeholders, including governmental bodies and legal institutions, to prioritize the enhancement of prisoners’ access to justice as a cornerstone of criminal justice reform efforts. Through a multifaceted approach encompassing legal reforms, institutional initiatives, and advocacy efforts, the paper contends that meaningful progress can be achieved in safeguarding prisoners’ rights and upholding the principles of justice and fairness within correctional facilities. In conclusion, this paper serves as a clarion call for action, urging policymakers, legal practitioners, and civil society actors to redouble their efforts in ensuring that prisoners are not deprived of their fundamental right to access justice. By addressing the systemic barriers and institutional shortcomings that impede prisoners’ access to justice, we can move closer towards realizing a more equitable and humane criminal justice system that affirms the dignity and rights of all individuals, irrespective of their incarcerated status.

Keywords: Prisoners’ Rights, Access to Justice, Fair Trial, Correctional Facilities, Legal Representation, Judicial Mechanisms, Natural Justice, Human Rights, Criminal Justice Reform

Share this research

Latest Publications

Journal of Legal Studies & Research
Scroll to Top