The Bareilly Central Jail in UP is making an effort to offer its inmates a shot at rehabilitation through higher education, pitching for structured classes and a college campus feel.
The jail can boast of a study centre resembling a ‘degree college’ on its premises if the state government approves its proposal submitted earlier this week.
After identifying the space for housing the study centre, deputy inspector general (Prisons) RP Singh has sent a proposal worth Rs 60 lakh to the state administration.
Singh is quite enthused about the idea, the brainchild of deputy jailors at the jail who coordinate the Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) programme for inmates.
The deputy jailors realised teachers felt uncomfortable taking classes inside the barracks. “Though none of them objects directly, we feel it,” said a deputy jailor.
The deputy jailors, BN Mishra and Rananjay Singh (who also takes classes), shared their idea with the jail’s senior superintendent AK Rai, who approved of it and forwarded the matter to Singh.
The proposal is also rooted in the level of interest shown by inmates. Of the 2,750 inmates, 298 are pursuing different degree courses, including BCom, BA, Bachelor of Preparatory Programme and MA, through IGNOU.
At present, classes are held in two barracks. Associate professors from colleges are invited for taking classes. The jail superintendent, jailor and deputy jailors also take classes.
The examinations are conducted in the premises under the supervision of deputy jailors and invigilators from IGNOU.