It is pertinent to note that more than 50% of the population in jail are under-trials. The first prison Adalat was inaugurated on 15.8.2000 in Chennai Central prison followed by
Madurai, Trichy, Vellore Cuddalore and Salem. In Vellore, there are two prisons, one for males and another for females, and for each of those prisons, prison Adalat is established. The functioning of prison Adalats has reduced not only the pendency of cases but also the prison population.
Prison Adalats are held by every Chief Metropolitan Magistrate or the Chief Judicial Magistrate or Metropolitan Magistrate/Judicial Magistrate in Central Jails on regular basis. The cases of under-trial prisoners who are involved in petty offences punishable up to three years are being disposed of through prison Adalats