Woman, Ganja trigger clash among jail inmates

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Bilaspur(CG), Mar 27 (UNI) Presence of a woman and Ganja among the extra facilities available triggered a clash among the inmates of the overcrowded Bilaspur Central Jail here last night, leaving many prisoners injured, while the jail superintendent and other guards ran for cover to escape the prisoners' fury.

Iron rods, bricks and stones were used by the prisoners, divided into two groups over the extra facilities made available to them, to attack their rivals around 9 p.m. in the overcrowded jail, where about 20 hardcore naxalites were also lodged.

About 1900 prisoners were at present lodged in the jail having a capacity to house only 1000 people, jail sources said.

Many injured were hospitalised, the sources said, adding about 300 police jawans, led by Additional Collector P S Elma and Additional Superintendent of Police Badrinarayan Meena, intervened to control the rioting prisoners.

Jail Superintendent Rajendra Gayakwad and other guards ran for cover when the prisoners clashed, the sources added.

The jail inmates were agitated over leniency and extra facilities being provided to select prisoners.

The immediate provocation was allowing a woman, who was jailed earlier on prostitution charge, to enter the jail during visiting hours yesterday without making any entries. She was seen talking to an 'influential' prisoner Tukeshwar Singh, provocating the rival faction led by Ranjan Garg.

On the other hand, an associate of Ranjan was caught by the guards after he was found sending inside the jail 'Ganja' concealed in a talcum powder tin.

The Additional Collector, who reached the jail during the clash, suspended three guards- Budhiyara Singh, Devendra Varma and Daya Prakash- for giving entry to the woman inside the jail without making any entry.

The Jail Superintendent claimed the situation was under control.

UNI ABS-SP 1414

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