In addition to the existing vocational training modules for rehabilitation of inmates, a leather footwear manufacturing and repair unit was recently set up in Yerawada Central Prison. The project is a collaboration between the state prison department and Mumbai-based company Tergus Works Pvt Ltd.
The facility was inaugurated on Monday by retired Indian Police Service (IPS) officer K L Prasad, in the presence State Prison Department Head Bhushankumar Upadhyay and Deputy Inspector-General (Prisons) Swati Sathe. “The initial set up can accommodate up to 60 inmates. If all goes as per the plan and sale volumes increase, we can raise the number of inmates to 300. We want more firms to join for setting up such facilities in the prisons across the state. Such facilities will help inmates to enhance their skills so that when they are released, they can live life with dignity,” said Upadhyay.
“This company (Tergus) has previously worked with prisons in Tamil Nadu and when they approached us with a proposal to start the facility here, we readily agreed,” said Sathe. The inmates, working in the facility, will get Rs 55 per day, which is the payment for a skilled inmate, and the remaining earnings will go in welfare funds and state treasury. The Yerawada jail already has functioning units of carpentry, bakery, farming, black smithy, handloom and powerloom — the products of which are sold with the state prison brand name at the jail department store.