Hyderabad: Aiming to become self-sufficient by 2020, the Telangana Prisons Department achieved a turnover of Rs 495 crore in 2018 through its industries and petrol bunks.
Addressing the annual press conference here on Thursday, Director General (Prisons and Correctional Services) VK Singh said the department had earned a net profit of Rs 16.72 crore in 2018 and was aiming at Rs 30 crore for the current year.
The department’s target was to earn Rs 100 crore in 2020 to make it self-sufficient. “We are marching fast on the path to self-sufficiency and setting an ambitious target to achieve it by 2020 itself,” he said.
Presently, the department is operating 17 petrol-filling stations in the city and other districts wherein inmates, released prisoners and former jail authorities are working in them. It opened ‘My Nation’ outlets and Ayurvedic villages where prisoners sell products prepared by fellow inmates.
According to Singh, prisoner deaths were reduced to eight in 2018, against 17 in 2017 and 24 in 2016. The department also became a pioneer in providing medical facilities, including master health checkup and regular physical exercise apart from providing nutritious food to prisoners.
“For 2019, we have set a target of improving industries and taking care of the staff. We will prepare pro-forma for collecting information on education and health of every jail staff and their family members,” Singh said.
The department had almost become a corruption-free wing and only one allegation of proved corruption came to light against a jail official. A reward of Rs 10,000 as declared in its policy was paid to the complainant.
He said 76,443 persons were lodged in jails across the State in 2018. Of them, around 12,000 were those who were sentenced for drunken driving cases.
As of now, some 5,608 prisoners were lodged in different jails, of which 2,081 persons were convicts, 3,228 undertrials, 299 detenues and 406 women prisoners. The total accommodation capacity is 7,133 in all jails, he said.
Responding to a query, Singh said rape accused, convicts and offenders arrested under POCSO Act were lodged in separate barracks in the jails and added that special counselling was also provided to them.
Constant vigil on prisoners with terror links: VK Singh
Hyderabad: A constant vigil was being maintained on the movements of those lodged in prisons in connection with terror links, said Director General (Prisons and Correctional Services) VK Singh here on Thursday.
When his attention was drawn towards highhandedness of prisoners arrested in connection with cases related to terrorist activities, he said the movements of such prisoners were restricted on jail premises. “We are maintaining surveillance of these prisoners round-the-clock,” he said.
The department had set up ‘Anand Ashrams’ (special homes) for rehabilitation of beggars in Chanchalguda and Cherlapalli Central Prisons after it launched a drive in coordination with police and municipal authorities in October 2017.
So far, 7,319 male and 4,475 female beggars visited Ashrams. Of them, 7,079 male and 4,440 female beggars were released on their personal undertaking on not resorting to begging again, he said. Around 1,32,705 unlettered prisoners were made literates under ‘Vidhya Danam’ programme, he added.