Miffed over curtailed facilities, 21 Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) operatives have stopped taking food in the Bhopal central jail.
“The basic facilities allowed in jail included proper food, bed sheets and blankets. Also, the inmates were allowed to meet their kin and use home-made stuff inside the jail, but all of that is being now denied to them,” said advocate Parvez Alam, who is representing 15 of the remaining 21 SIMI operatives in the jail.
He added that his clients were not being allowed to fetch food from the jail canteen post the October 31 morning alleged jailbreak by eight SIMI men.
Alam alleged that the jail authorities give his clients newspapers with portions after trimming portions that talk about the jailbreak.
“I will seek permission from the jail administration to meet my clients and personally see the facilities and arrangements they are entitled to. I will also request the jail administration to render them necessary stuff, which they are entitled to get as jail inmates. If I don’t get relief for my clients from the jail administration, I’ll petition the court for the same,” said Alam.
Director general (jail) Sanjay Choudhary denied any hunger strike by any of the jail inmates and said if ever such a thing happens it will be dealt according to the jail manual.
The ban on general mulaqat of jail inmates with their kin was lifted on Wednesday.
Alam, the lawyer for seven of the eight slain SIMI men, is planning to move court for police protection. “I have become a target after this incident I have to look after my safety and also look after the interest of other undertrials lodged in the jail,” he told HT.
Alam said he was moving a petition with the jail authorities to meet other members of the banned outfit lodged in Bhopal jail.
Operatives lived life king-size
According to sources in Bhopal Central Jail, all 29 SIMI men in Block A and Block B lived life king size.
They enjoyed the food of their choice, used the open space in their block for gym and even used their own clothes and towels as curtains to steal eye from the jail officials.
While all the cells of the non-SIMI inmates were checked routinely, the cells housing the SIMI men in the two high security barracks were seldom checked from inside.
A key source at the jail informed that the a few weeks ago, a jail official was also threatened by the SIMI men, when he tried to enter there for a routine check. The regular staff and the newly recruited guards were told by jail officials not to react to provocations by the jailed SIMI men.