Nagpur: Who said that prisoners can’t be reformed or rehabilitated? Except for a very few (5%) most of the inmates in various Central Prisons are people who have committed violent crimes at the spur of the moment said ADGP S K Upadhyay.
ADGP S K Upadhyay said that the Prisons department is all set to host Bandhiwan Kala Rajni (Prisoners Talent Presentation) Programme titled “Timirathoon Tejakade” (From Darkness to Light) at Vasantrao AGPURNEWSDeshpande Hall on December 17, 2015. Chief Minister of Maharashtra Devendra Fadnavis will be inaugurating the programme, while Minister of State for Home (Maharashtra) Ram Shinde, Commissioner of Police and other prominent personalities in the city will be attending the programme.
ADGP S K Upadhyay while addressing a press conference said that reforms and rehabilitation is a buzzword of the Maharashtra Prison Department. In the prison the sick minds of the inmates are cured so that they can lead a worthy life and prove their worth as well. The inmates who are brought to the jails come from various s sections of the society. They too possess various types of innate skills, talents and qualities. Such talented inmates should be groomed so that they get an opportunity to display their skillful talents.
In order to provide a platform for the talented inmates to showcase their talents and skills, this programme Bandhiwan Kala Rajni’s “Timirathoon Tejakade” is being organized. The inmates are very excited and enthusiastic about this programme. The inmates have been preparing for this programme for the past 2-3 months. A large scale programme was last organized in the year 2005. However from 2006, for some reasons this programme was suspended. However, this year the programme “Timirathoon Tejakade” has been organized with renewed vigour and enthusiasm for the prisoners.
The inmates from Nagpur Central Prison, Amravati Central Prison, Morshi Open Prison, Aurangabad Central Prison, Nashik Road Central Prison, Yerwada Central Prison and Kolhapur Central Prison in all seven Central Prisons will be participating in this programme to be showcased on December 17, 2015. In all 108 inmates including ninety six male inmates and twelve female inmates will be participating in this programme.
Many dying folk arts and cultural extravaganza will be exhibited by the inmates during this Timirathoon Tejakade programme. The inmates have strived to bring out their very best in preparations for this programme. Some of the programmes include Sanai (bugle sort of wood instrument) rendition, Gondhal or Rural folk celebration of Goddesses, Maratmoli Lawni, Khandoba Dance, Silent drama on Gandhi’s life depicting people’s unity during adverse situations or calamities, Traditional Thaker Geet (songs), Drama depicting the valiant acts of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj and his coronation in an artistic style. While speaking about this depiction of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, ADGP S K Upadhyay said that the lead actor who is playing the role of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj is a Muslim inmate named Yakoob who is undergoing sentence for murder (302) in Yerwada Central Prison.
The products made by the inmates used to be sold in a Shop outside the Nagpur Central Prison. Goods like leather shoes, carpets, Aggarbatti stands, paper-weights, Shatranjees (carpets) Almirahs etc. However, of late the shop remains closed. When asked ADGP S K Upadhyay, he said that they are trying to revive it. He claimed that except for a few Central Prisons, others are doing well in Maharashtra especially Yerwada. He claimed that the raw material procurement in many jails including Nagpur Central Prison has taken some set-back. In another three months the procurement will get streamlined.
He disclosed that they are getting into an agreement with a Company called Minda which will buy the wire-harnessing made by the prisoners. This Wire Harnessing Unit will be making the Wiring kit for the Bolero SUV vehicle.
Prisons in Maharashtra do not face overcrowding
While speaking to media personnel, he said that the combined capacity of all the Central Prisons (53) in Maharashtra is 24000. The capacity of Nagpur Central Prison alone is 1800.
Except for a few Central Prisons like Arthur Road Central Prison, Thane Central Prison, Taloja Central Prison and Kalyan Central Prison, almost all the prisons have a decent number of inmates. Yerwada and Amravati Central Prisons has double the capacity (which is not bad). However, he said that recently they have got permissions and so have started constructing extra barracks in Yerwada Central Prison (2-barracks) and Thane Central Prison (6 Barracks) and Arthur Road Central Prison (1-barrack).
While speaking about keeping the first and young adult offenders away from the hardened inmates and criminals, he said that every jail has a Baba Barrack. The new or very young offenders are housed here and are prevented from mingling up with other hardened criminals. In local Maharashtra prison’s parlance they are called as Kacha kaidhi (raw inmate).
While speaking about the man-power shortage, ADGP S K Upadhyay said that a committee was constituted to study the shortage called the Mulla Committee. The committee had recommended that
- Over 6 prisoners one Prison guard should be deployed
- Over 25 Guards one Hawaldar should be deployed
- Over 5 Hawaldars one Subedar should be deployed and
- Over 430 Subedars one Warden should be deployed.
However, at the moment there is a staff of around 4100 Prison staff all over Maharashtra. He claimed that there is a shortage of around 200-250 staff. He claimed that they do avail the services of 300-400 Home Guards.
ADGP said that based on the new Government Resolution (GR), there will be no separate recruitment for the prisons. At the time of police recruitment itself, recruitment will be done for the Prison department also. After recruitment they will have to undergo a training of 5 months for duties in Prison.
ADGP introduces newer stress relieving exercise
ADGP said that they have introduced Yoga for the prisoners and around 8000 to 9000 prisoners are actively learning the various skills of Yoga. He claimed that those prisoners who have learnt all the Aasans, Pranayams and Meditation techniques, will be given 3 month’s remission. This seems to be an added incentive for many young inmates to actively learn the Yoga techniques.