Former Bihar chief minister Lalu Yadav has become prisoner number 1528 at Birsa Munda Central Jail, where he has been imprisoned after being sentenced to five years for cheating and other charges in a Rs. 950-crore fodder scam.
Within a fortnight, he will also be assigned a task he is supposed to perform as per rigorous-imprisonment norms.
Before being allotted this permanent numerical identity, he had been given a temporary number, 3312. Another former Bihar chief minister, a co-accused in the case, Jagannath Mishra, will be identified by the number 1529, said acting jail superintendent Virendar Singh.
The new numbers were allotted after the sentence documents reached the jail authorities on late Friday night from the court.
All three convicted and jailed in the fodder scam have been lodged as inmates of the upper-division cell or the VIP area of the jail.
However, as per the Bihar Jail Manual, followed in prisons in Bihar and Jharkhand, the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief may not wear the black and white striped jail uniform.
Mishra who is currently lodged at the Rajendra Institute of Medical Sciences (RIMS), a state-run hospital, has been informed about his identification number by jail authorities and of his sentence by his counsel.
"During the 15-days, as per the jail manual, we observe the psychological aspects of a convict and whether they have acclimatised to the jail environment. Accordingly we assign them a job," said Singh. He added the same procedures would be followed in the case of Lalu and the others sentenced in the fodder scam.
"A job is decided once we are confident that a convict has accepted the jail life," Singh said.
Lalu being a law graduate from Patna Law College and an honorary doctorate from Patna University, speculations are rife that he might be asked to teach other prisoners. But that might not come to fruition as the manual says VIP prisoners cannot interact with non-VIP inmates for security reasons.
Lalu will earn Rs. 46 per day. A portion of his daily income will be deposited with the Victims of the Offence Welfare Trust.