Punjab Jail Minister reviews awareness programme to tackle COVID-19

Chandigarh (Punjab) [India], Mar 22 (ANI): Jail Minister Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa on Saturday reviewed the awareness creation programme among prisoners and prison staff for the prevention from COVID-19.

Divulging the details from the meeting, the minister said that the posters and banners for awareness have been pasted at all jails including barracks. The prison staff and medical officers have been trained by specialists in the prevention, identification and treatment of COVID-19.

"Besides, special care is 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 added.

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

For the 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 overcrowded 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 High Court for granting interim bail for about one or two months to the prisoners or sentence in one case or petty offences. (ANI)