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Buddha gives nod to jail modernisation plan

A comprehensive plan to enhance security inside jail premises across the state has been approved by Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee.

Written by Sabyasachi Bandopadhyay | Kolkata | Published: February 16, 2009 2:19 am

The decision to implement the Rs 10-crore-modernisation plan comes in the wake of raids conducted at Alipore and Dum Dum jails from where many incriminating articles like cellphones,DVDS,marijuana were recovered from inmates and jail staff

A comprehensive plan to enhance security inside jail premises across the state has been approved by Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee. The Rs 10 crore-modernisation plan will pave way for installation of radio scanners,metal detectors,more surveillance cameras in all the six central jails and sensitive district jails of the state by the end of April this year.

The decision to enhance surveillance and checking of inmates,as well as jail employees,has been taken following the seizure of cellphones,DVDS,marijuana and other incriminating materials from inmates and employees of Alipore and Dum Dum jails. In all,six mobile sets had been recovered from Alipore central jail during surprise raids on January 25 which was conducted jointly by Kolkata police and jail authorities.

This jail is considered to be the most sensitive as it had notorious inmates like Aftab Ansari,convicted in American Center attack,Happy Singh and Gabbar Singh,accused in several murder cases.

“Our first priority is to install the scanners in Alipore jail and Presidency jail. I have already started talking to a few firms in New Delhi for supply of the scanners. We are also buying other equipment like hand-held metal detectors and door frames at the gates of the jails. The aim is to decrease the dependence on security personnel,” B D Sharma,IG,prisons,told The Indian Express.

He also said that out of the Rs 10 crore sanctioned about Rs 3 to 4 crore will be spent on computerisation of records. Incidentally,during the clash between inmates and guards at Howrah jail in the last week of December,several important papers were burnt and that led to a delay in the release of several prisoners.

The state government is also considering bestowing the status of a police force on jail guards.

“There is a demand from the jail guards that they should be given the same facilities that are given to the police force. We have told them that we are ready to do that but in that case rules governing the police force should be applicable to them,” Sharma further said.

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