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HindustanTimes Tue,16 Sep 2014

What’s baking in Karnal prison? Inmates’ reform

Vishal Joshi, Hindustan Times  Karnal, September 20, 2013
First Published: 11:08 IST(20/9/2013) | Last Updated: 11:12 IST(20/9/2013)

Soon you will relish bakery products prepared at the district jail here. To be marketed under the brand name of KP (Karnal Prison), the welfare project is sponsored by a Dubai-based millionaire philanthropist SP Singh Oberoi.

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On Thursday, director general (prisons) Yashpal Singal inaugurated the bakery unit on the jail premises, the first such facility to be opened in Haryana as a measure of reform for inmates.

“We got the idea from Tihar Jail where TJ brand of bakery is popular in the Delhi market. Our effort will have a far-reaching result in shaping the fate of thousands of jail inmates in Haryana,” said Sher Singh, Karnal jail superintendent and brain behind the project.

Scientists from National Dairy Research Institute (NDRI) here have trained convicts for bakery operations. “During his visit to Karnal on September 2, I met Oberoi and forwarded a proposal to start a bakery here. He not only appreciated the initiative but also provided a bakery oven for the jail,” Singh said.

The prison department said the initial requirement of bread, biscuits, buns and rusk, among other things, would be met by the Karnal jail. From October, a sale counter will be opened outside the jail premises to generate funds for the raw material.

Subsequently, KP bakery products would be supplied to the jails of adjoining districts, Haryana Police Academy in Madhuban, Sainik School Kunjpura (near Karnal), the NDRI and mini-secretariat.

“The project will help to shape the future of inmates. The initiative will engage them in constructive activities and help in joining the mainstream life after completing their sentence,” Singal said.

THE DONOR

SP Singh Oberoi, a successful hotelier from Dubai first hit the headlines after he saved 17 Indians from gallows in Sharjah. His no-profit Sarbat Da Bhala Charitable Trust is instrumental in introducing several welfare projects, including jail reforms in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Punjab. Oberoi reiterated his commitment to offer help jail authorities of Haryana in starting more welfare programmes.

Phone facility in jail soon

The DG (prisons), Yashpal Singal, said the department was planning to start a facility where the inmates would be allowed to make telephone calls to their family from the jail premises.


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