Raid reveals convicts having contraband, prohibited articles

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Ambala, Jun 5 (UNI) A surprise inspection of the Central jail early today exposed that one of the life convict possessed contraband, many others had stored a large number of prohibited articles and an IAS officer serving life imprisonment was enjoying undue privileges.

A surprise inspection of the Central Jail by a team headed by the Haryana Prisons Inspector General M.S. Mann here revealed gross violation of rules and regulations and lack of supervision.

Mr Mann, while interacting with media here later, said that corruption was rampant in almost every jail in the state and prisoners, in connivance with officials, were flaunting rules and ''enjoying the jail stay.'' During the search in the presence of two DSPs and Jail officials, a convict Sohan Singh undergoing life imprisonment in the Sekhon murder case was found with 17 gramme of opium. His two other accomplices were also found having the contraband, he said.

Sohan Singh confessed that the contraband was smuggled into the jail with the connivance of the jail officials and he had paid Rs 3,000 to them, the IG said.

A case under section 18 of NDPS Act was registered against Sohan by the Baldevnagar Police who later sought his remand through production warrant from the court, the IG said adding that action would be taken against the officials on receiving the report after investigation.

Mr Mann stated that two undertrials Bobby and Sanjay Botana were enjoying prohibited items brought in through the jail officials.

These items included a 'hookka', biscuits, noodles, cigarettes, cereals, dry fruits, chocolates, expensive bathing soaps, toothpastes and some highly inflammable articles.

An UT-cadre IAS officer Dharam Chand Shankhla undergoing life imprisonment in murder case, had been given facilities in violation of jail rules. A prisoner had been deputed to serve him for cooking meals and other services, Mr Mann said.

He said that a medicine scam was detected at Hissar after which jail superintendent and doctor were arrested and put under suspension. These cases had been transferred to the crime branch, he added.

In response to a query, the IG said that the pressure on presently crowded jails would be eased with construction of new jails at Yamunanagar, Jhajjar and Faridabad.

UNI XC JN JMK1652

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