Jails Minister Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa reviewing the preparedness to check coronavirus spread in state jails in Chandigarh on Saturday

DW BUREAU / CHANDIGARH

Punjab Jails Minister Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa today reviewed awareness creation program among prisoners and Prison staff for prevention. He also issued detailed instructions to the officials to control spread of COVID-19 in prisons. The minister said that the Posers and banners for awareness have been pasted at all jails including barracks. The Prison staff and Medical Officers have been trained by specialists in prevention, identification and treatment. The prisons are being disinfected and special attention is being paid to maintain hygiene.

Besides, special care was being taken for providing treatment to the high risk prisoners including elderly, pregnant women, children living with mothers and prisoners having low immunity like those suffering from chronic diseases like HIV, TB, drug addiction etc. Apart from this, the Inter mixing of prisoners between barracks has been stopped.

He also added that the sports/games and other activities involving physical contact have been temporarily suspended. All jails are making their own masks for prisoners and prison staff. Sanitizers are also being made at some jails and are being provided at all jails. Physical mulakat in jails has been stopped. E-mulakat through app system has been specially started through video conferencing. All peshis are presently being done by video conferencing.

Randhawa also said that all new inmates, inmates returning from Court hearing and from parole are being screened at main gate and kept under quarantine for periods of three to seven days. Efforts are being made to reduce prisoner population by sending prisoners on parole.

For release of under-trials in petty cases on bail, the matter is being taken up with appropriate authorities. To expedite the pending applications in parole matters, the DCs have already been requested. As such the jails in Punjab are not over crowded except some jails like Amritsar, Ferozepur, Sangrur, Patiala, Hoshiarpur and Mansa that are overcrowded. An exercise is being carried out to transfer inmates from overcrowded jails to other jails.

In order to ensure social distance/distance between inmates in addition to granting parole and furlough to the convicts, the matter is also being taken up with Hon’ble High Court for granting interim bail for about one or two months to the prisoners or sentence in one case or petty offences.

The Friends and relatives of prisoners who intend to virtually meet the prisoners can do so through the following link:http://eprisons.nic.in. The Registration

for video conferencing mulakat by visitors at above mentioned link.

An auto-generated email will be sent to visitor where a link and PIN will be provided. Visitor will connect to video conferencing by checking on this link. The jail authorities to connect to video conferencing through ePrisons account option VCURL.

(editor@dailyworld.in)

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