LAHORE - At least 40 prisoners were released from Punjab jails on Tuesday after philanthropists paid fine worth millions of rupees on their behalf.

A woman and a juvenile were also among those released from various jails in line with the spirit of the holy month of Ramazan.

Punjab Prisons Inspector General Farooq Nazeer told reporters that 40 inmates were released from jails after payment of Rs22.2 million by Qarshi Foundation. The donors also gave cash and clothes to the prisoners during a ceremony at a jail in Lahore.

Hundreds of prisoners belonging to poor families are rotting in Punjab jails even after completion of their jail term. Their families cannot pay the fine, Diyat or other forms of compensation. Many of them need just a few thousand rupees to secure their release.