More than 15,000 prisoners are lodged in Tihar jail, and their numbers are increasing every month. But the country’s largest jail has only one regular orthopaedic senior resident doctor, who also visits Rohini jail once a week to handle medical complaints of prisoners.
“This appears to be inadequate. Since most of the patients require physiotherapy only on the advice of an orthopaedic surgeon, committee is of the opinion that two senior residents (orthopaedic) are also required for better working of these physiotherapy units,” an assessment report by members of the committee constituted by Directorate General of Health Services, Delhi government, read.
The committee was constituted in pursuance to the HC’s order asking to assess the requirement of physiotherapy units along with their manpower at Tihar, Rohini and Mandoli jail complexes.
The committee, in its report to the DGHS, found that there is “inadequate” space at Tihar and Rohini jails for existing physiotherapy unit. “The space for the existing physiotherapy unit in this jail (Mandoli) was found to be satisfactory,” the report said. It added that there are four sanctioned posts for physiotherapists at Tihar Central jail, lying vacant for a long time…”
The issue cropped up during hearing of a petition by Jagtar Singh Hawara, who is serving a life sentence at Tihar for conspiring to assassinate former Punjab CM Beant Singh. He has approached HC and sought special facilities for treatment of his back pain and other spinal problems.