Minister Madan Mitra was shifted to jail ward No. 6 of Alipore correctional home on Monday evening at the end of a day of high drama. Six other inmates will be staying with him in the ward to assist him in his daily chores. Mitra met visitors for around two hours on Monday at the hospital ward.
Allegations had surfaced on Sunday night that Mitra had illegally used mobile phones of employees at the prison to contact relatives and party colleagues. He was kept at the hospital ward on Sunday night after he complained of breathlessness and claustrophobia. The ward had been spruced up overnight, in advance, for his arrival.
By Monday afternoon, the state jail department cracked down on the use of cell phones in the jail and ordered all employees to deposit their mobiles before entering the jail premises. A stricture was also passed according to which all employees, including officers, would have to submit their phones to the duty officer. Cell phones are banned inside jail but senior officers were allowed to keep them. But with the news of Mitra using cell phones surfacing, even that was banned.
Insiders said Mitra borrowed cell phones of jail employees and supporters to make several calls from inside the jail. A section of jail officials close to the Trinamool Congress is believed to be ensuring that Mitra gets the best facilities during his stay at the jail.