Pune City Police has booked 14 inmates of Yerawada Prison for allegedly assaulting Shahrukh alias Rashid Shaikh, an undertrial, on Tuesday morning. The incident took place a few hours after Shahrukh and two other inmates allegedly attacked Tushar Hambir, an undertrial facing murder charges who has links to radical outfit Hindu Rashtra Sena, in the early hours of Tuesday.
In the second incident, the 14 inmates allegedly assaulted Hambir as well as a prison official and a constable, who tried to end the scuffle. The officer and constable, who sustained injuries, have lodged a complaint against the 14 inmates on charges of assaulting an inmate, assaulting government officials and stopping them from doing their duty.
Earlier on Tuesday, Shahrukh, who is also facing a murder charge, and two other inmates had allegedly assaulted Hambir with bricks and nails. Hambir sustained injuries in the attack and was admitted to the Sassoon General Hospital.
Overcrowded prisons, no segregation
Yerawada Prison has a capacity to house 2,449 inmates but it is home to double the number, about 5,000. It is a problem which prevents prison officials from segregating the inmates. Segregation of inmates, especially those belonging to rival gangs and opposing ideologies, is important to maintain law and order. But lack of space has made this impossible. The incidents of scuffles and violence happen because the members of rival gangs often get opportunities to interact and argue, which may lead to violent episodes.
This incident enraged Hambir’s friends, who decided to avenge the assault, said police. As many as 14 inmates, who were close to Hambir, allegedly roughed up Shahrukh, and when prison officer Sandip Ekshinge and constable Sameer Syed tried to stop the violence, the inmates allegedly assaulted both of them.
Ekshinge has sustained injuries on his nose and lips as he was hit by a brick. Syed has also sustained internal injuries. The inmates have been booked under various sections of the Indian Penal Code for assaulting a fellow inmate, attacking government servants and stopping them from performing official duties.
Those booked have been identified as Rahul Tupek, Akshay Hake, Yashwant Suryavanshi, Prithviraj Suryavanshi, Gaurav Jadhav, Rahul Pansare, Akshay Chaudhari, Aniket Jadhav, Akshay Ingulkar, Sanjay Autade, Anil Somwanshi, Shiv Shankar Sharma, Pavin Sutar and Nikhil Patil. A separate case has been lodged against Shahrukh, Aman Riyaz Ansari and Salim Shaikh under Section 326 (voluntarily causing grievous hurt by dangerous weapons) of the IPC.