Hyderabad: The Telangana Department of Prisons and Correctional Services has reported sale proceeds of Rs 599.89 crore, generated through sale of different products made by its inmates and also from the petrol stations run by it.
This is the highest sale proceeds reported by a Prisons Department in the country, with Tamil Nadu coming at a distant second with Rs 72.96 crore and Maharashtra third with Rs 29.40 crore during 2019.
The total value of goods produced by inmates in prisons across the country during 2019 was Rs 846.04 crore. The value of the goods produced by per inmate was highest in Telangana at Rs 8.93 lakh, followed by Tamil Nadu at Rs 49,611 and Chandigarh at Rs 41,478 in 2019, according to the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) data released for 2019.
According to the NCRB, the prisoners, who are engaged in labour, are paid a nominal wage based on their skillset. An average of Rs 103.19, Rs 89.54 and Rs 80.06 were paid per day to skilled, semi-skilled and unskilled prisoners, respectively.
Prisons officials here said the department was earning more from its fuel stations, which is employing over 247 people. The fuel station at Chanchalguda, established six years ago, was reaping rich dividends.
Presently, the department is operating 20 fuel pumps in the city and other districts wherein inmates, released prisoners and former jail authorities were working. In addition to the fuel bunks, the department has opened ‘My Nation’ outlets and Ayurvedic villages where prisoners sell various products, including food items prepared by their fellow inmates.
Cherlapally Central Prison Superintendent M Sampath said the department had diversified units catering to the needs of various clients. Inmates also manufacture steel furniture required by schools, hospitals and police training centres.
This unit itself was earning Rs 15 crore every year, he explained, adding that there were other units that prepare bed sheets and wooden products. This year, the stitching unit had manufactured eight lakh face masks.
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