Dreaded militants, gangsters and underworld dons lodged in Tihar’s jail number 1 are a frightened lot.
They allege an organised extortion racket is being run in the jail in connivance with jail officials and their refusal to pay-up has resulted in attempts on their life.
Kiran Bedi, former IG, Tihar said, “If you stay away from the ground, how would you know what is happening. Officers have to work inside. They have to talk and listen to the inmates. We had the right results as we followed the right processes.”
Some of the inmates who were threatened had made a written representation to the Superintendent of jail number 1 on March 18 and apprised him about the threats by two inmates –– Sheru and Twinkle.
The letters states that around four months back a Canadian national — Gurdish Singh —was transferred from the Rohini jail to Jail number 1.
“He was threatened by Sheru of dire consequences if he did not pay up. Singh reported the matter to the deputy superintendent who assured him action would be taken but nothing was done,” the letter states.
“The surprising thing that proves the strong nexus of jail officials and the accused is that before we could return to our ward after reporting the matter to the superintendent, the head warden of ward number 6 – where we are lodged – made Sheru stand at the main gate with an iron rod with sharp edges,” reads the letter.
“Somehow we managed to save ourselves with the help of Tamil Nadu Police guards who recovered the iron rod from Sheru. The matter was immediately brought to the notice of all concerned, including DG Prisons, through his letterbox. SP ordered Sheru to be kept under double lock in the cell but instead of following the orders, the head warden never did so. He moves freely in his block F and his ward number 6. CCTVs installed will confirm our claim,” further read the letter.
“You don’t work in isolation. Tihar is like a township. You should have your nose on the ground,” Kiran Bedi said.
Tihar DG, BK Gupta refused to comment on the incident, the letter written to him and if any action had been taken.