Till Tuesday morning, Ram Singh (name changed), who was convicted on corruption charges, was worried about how he will look after his family after his release from Tihar prison six months later.
Hours later, Singh, a trained lawyer and a postgraduate, heaved a sigh of relief after he bagged the job of a legal advisor in a private company during the prison's sixth job placement drive, held at sub-jail three. The salary was decent: Rs 2.40 lakh per annum.
Sixteen private companies held selection interviews in this initiative of the Tihar authorities for its mail convicts. Among the 30-odd successful job aspirants was Suresh Kumar (name changed), who was convicted on forgery charges and has a diploma in pharmacy. Kumar bagged the highest package - of Rs 25,000 per month - offered in the drive.
"I was confident of getting a good job," Kumar said, elated on getting selected as a senior marketing executive in a private firm with a salary of Rs 3 lakh per annum. According to Singh, he had stopped imagining that he may get a decent job due to his jail term.
Graduate Ramesh Narang (name changed), who was convicted on attempt to murder charges, got four marketing job offers while Kishor Rastogi (name changed), convicted on assault charges, got selected as a tailoring instructor by an organization. On his release from the jail, Rastogi will visit Tihar to share his skills.
Based on their qualifications and prior work experience, the 30 candidates got a range of job offers, ranging from legal advisors and marketing executives to data entry operators, drivers and carpenters. The highest salary offered was Rs 25,000 per month while the lowest was Rs 15,000.
"The 30 convicts were chosen on account of their good character and the fact that they will be released from jail in six months. We had got their curriculum vitae prepared and sent them to potential employers before the interviews," said Tihar prison's spokesperson Sunil Gupta.
Till now, the prison's placement drives has fetched jobs for 372 convicts, said Gupta. "The jobs will help them in getting rehabilitated," he said.