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Full house, and some more

Nobody expects luxury in jail, though it?s no secret that many VIP inmates do get all the comforts of home in their cells.

india Updated: Jun 16, 2006 10:11 IST

Nobody expects luxury in jail, though it?s no secret that many VIP inmates do get all the comforts of home in their cells. But a bed and space to rest would seem like a reasonable demand. Not so in Hajipur Jail, where inmates are forced to sleep ?standing? up. The jail, which has a capacity of 225 inmates, houses some 1,244 prisoners. The space is so limited that inmates often have to spend the night on their feet. It?s not just that. The other facilities in the jail are equally poor, with food quality being extremely inferior. Medical care is unheard of here. And visitors to the jail often complain of the highhandedness of BMP jawans deployed to guard the jail. To protest these inhuman conditions, hundreds of undertrials have refused to go to court for case trials, demanding better living conditions, improvement in quality of food and removal of the BMP jawans. This is the second time UTs here have protested against jail conditions. Recently, a team of government doctors led by Dr K.C. Singh did a random inspection of the jail?s kitchen. Their verdict came as no surprise: they found that food for prisoners was not being prepared in a hygienic way. Several inmates were also diagnosed with tuberculosis and filaria. A written complaint was also sent by the UTs to Vaishali DM Sanjeev Hans against the poor quality of food. To make matters worse, some politically-influential inmates call the shots at the jail. Recently, one such prisoner thrashed a physicallychallenged UT for refusing to serve him liquor. Though jail authorities denied such an incident, reliable jail sources confirmed it. The DM, meanwhile, said the BMP jawans would not be withdrawn as their presence is required due to the Maoist attack on the Jandaha police station.