Dasna jail inmates prepare herbal colours for Holi | noida | Hindustan Times
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Dasna jail inmates prepare herbal colours for Holi

A batch of 25 inmates at the Dasna jail in Ghaziabad is undergoing training for preparing herbal colours for the upcoming Holi festival, inside the jail premises

noida Updated: Mar 22, 2016 23:38 IST
Peeyush Khandelwal
The inmates are preparing 500kg of herbal colours that have already been pre-ordered.
The inmates are preparing 500kg of herbal colours that have already been pre-ordered. (Sakib Ali/HT Photo)

A batch of 25 inmates at the Dasna jail in Ghaziabad is undergoing training for preparing herbal colours for the upcoming Holi festival, inside the jail premises. The jail authorities have roped in the services of a non-profit organisation which is conducting the training and also preparing the inmates to be able to run their own startups upon release.

The group is busy preparing nearly 500kg of herbal colours for the festival, which have already been pre-booked by jail officials and families of the inmates.

“The batch is busy learning the process of making herbal colours, which are natural and of edible grade. Natural rose, lemon grass, elaichi and sandalwood oil are added to the colours to give extra perfume. Later, these will be packed in pouches by machines and made ready for delivery,” SP Yadav, jail superintendent at Dasna, said.

“The (selected) organisation is providing the inmates training free-of-cost. The training will also help inmates to begin their own businesses and startups when they are released. This initiative has been taken to provide inmates with a chance to earn more money. Inmates get a paltry Rs 25 to Rs 40 per day while working in jail and they hardly have finances or skills to meet future challenges,” Yadav said.

The group of inmates is also upbeat about learning the new skills and have even pre-booked orders of the final product themselves, to be delivered to their families on Holi.

“This work interests me a lot as I used to work as a painter before being put in jail. This gives me hope that I can start a small business of my own when I am released from here. This work does not involve major finances,” Daulat Ram, a 39-year-old inmate who is under trial, said.

Members from Divya Jyoti Jagriti Sansthan, the organisation which is providing training to the inmates, said that they had previously worked with inmates of Tihar jail and some of them, after being released, launched their own startup in September 2015 in Delhi.

“They started with an initial investment Rs 15 lakh, to which our organisation also contributed. Their business is successful and have even got several corporate houses as customers. The inmates of Dasna jail are also being trained so that they can start similar ventures. Apart from herbal colours, we will also train them in preparing incense sticks and cones, which have a regular demand throughout the year,” Swami Vishalanand, member of the organisation, said.