The Chief Minister Punjab has given his nod to set up ultra modern jails especially in the newly formed districts in the state. Besides this the design and plan for three ultra-modern high security new jails at Amritsar, Bathinda and Muktsar to be constructed at a total cost of about Rs. 300 crore within two years has also been approved. The new jails coming up would be equipped with CCTV cameras, Mobile Jammers and other security equipment to ensure proper security in these upcoming Jails besides.
This was revealed here today by Mr. Sarwan Singh Phillaur, Jail Minister Punjab while addressing a high level meeting of the department. The Minister also said that the government was fully aware of the problems being faced by the prison staff in handling the nexus between the drug peddlers and the prisoners in the jails and to break this nexus the state government has decided to empower the superintendents of jails to search the prisoners and conduct criminal proceeding under NDPC Act. The matter was being taken up with the CM before final implementation, said the minister. The Minister has asked the officers to conduct extensive search operations in Punjab prisons with a view to nabbing the objectionable material posing security threat from the jail inmates. The officers confiscating maximum of such things from the prisoners would be honored by the state government, said the Minister.
To ensure timely medical aid to the prisoners, the Minister said that a committee comprising of Superintendent Jail, Medical Officer of the Jail and Civil Surgeon have been constituted to identify the Psychiatrist, Pediatrician, Gynecologist and other specialists’ on call doctors of the area to be on the panel of the jail department.
Referring to extending proper health and hygiene care to the children, below the age of 6 years, of the women prisoners in the state, the Minister has directed the officers to ensure adequate health and hygiene cover to 88 children of the more than 1000 women prisoners in state jails. To improve the food quality in jails, the Minister said that the dieticians from the department of Dietetics PGI have recommended a proper diet chart for the children which would be implemented at the earliest. He has asked the jail authorities to monitor diet norms system in all the jails. A committee comprising IG (Jails), representatives of Central jails and Sub-jails besides a dietician from PGI Chandigarh have already been constituted which would submit its report within 15 days to recommended proper nutritious food for jail inmates.
With a view to engaging the prisoners in some lucrative venture, the Minister said that the state government was in touch with the Indian Oil Corporation working out the modalities to open the petrol/filling stations at Nabha, Sangrur and Gurdaspur where prisoners with good conduct would be given jobs. Besides this the department has also chalked out a plan to set up its own bakery unit on the pattern of Tihar Jail, said the Minister.
Prominent among others who were present in the meeting included Mr. D. S Bains Principal Secretary Home, Mr. Rajpal Meena ADGP Prisons and other senior officers of the department.