Cops need to visit jails for inspection regularly: Additional Director General of Police

NPnews24 Online Pune: “Police officers should regularly visit jails for inspection,” the Head of State prisons and Correctional Service Department told  Additional Director General of Police Sunil Ramanand told Maharashtra Police Chief DGP Subodh Jaiswal.

Ramanand further said that according to law, the police officers should regularly check prisons but they do not do so.
He added that the police should follow the rule so that no incidents of violence happen in the prisons.
He was talking about the issue during a press conference at the Centre for Police Research (CPR) on Pashan Road as there were scuffles between jail inmates from two groups in Yerwada Central Jail thrice last week.
Pune City Police Commissioner Dr K Venkatesham, CID Chief Atulchandra Kulkarni, Director Police Wireless Retesh Kumaarr and other senior officers were also present during the press conference.
“An enquiry is being conducted to get to the cause of the fights. We should take actions against and measures to ensure that such incidents are not repeated in the jails instead of just pointing out somebody’s fault. I also would like to emphasise that no police officer goes to the prisons to inspect them regularly.  There are only few ex-officio visitors of the prison who inspect  and check the prisons but no cop,” Ramanand said.
“After visiting several prisons, I realised that expect police officers, Dostrict Collectorate official, Public Work Department (PWD) officials, Health Department officials, etc, visit the prisons for an inspection and check them. have come to know that except police, officials from district collectorate, public works department (PWD), health etc go to the prisons for inspection as per rules. If there is suprise visit, there will be lateral control of police on them, which will help us”, Ramanand further added.
DGP Jaiswal said, “We will take all necessary measures to prevent such incidents in the future.”
Under section 59 of the Prisons Act, 1894, the State government has made rules called, ‘The
Maharashtra Visitors of Prisons Rules, 1962’ and appointed ex-officio visitors from various departments to visit the jails including police officials.

According to these rules, visitors may at the time of their visits make a note of the number of prisoners confined in undertrial yards and their respective periods of detention and may make a report in the ‘Visitors’ Book’ about the cases of undertrial prisoners which appear to have been unduly delayed beyond the prescribed period of three months.

“All visitors may inspect the barracks, cells, wards, worksheds and other buildings of the prison, ascertain whether  considerations of health, cleanliness and security are attended to, proper management and discipline are maintained in every respect,  examine the registers of convicted and undertrial prisoners, the punishment book, other prison registers containing entries relating to prisoners, the prison accounts containing entries relating to prisoners, hear and attend to all representations and petitions made by prisoners or see and question any prisoner out of hearing, but not out of sight, of the jail officer, direct, if deemed advisable, that any such representations or petitions including appeal and mercy petitions withheld by the Superintendent under rules in force be forwarded to the State government,” it said.

The visitor needs to make an entry in the Visitors Book with the date and hour of the visit, any remarks as to the result of the inspection, call for from the jail record any book wherein entries relating to prisoners are made and inspect it unless the Superintendent for reasons to be recorded in writing refuses to allow such inspection on the ground that it is not desirable so to do in the public interest.