253 Indians, 416 Pakistanis in UK jails
Deportation of foreign prisoners is among the major issues faced by new Home Secretary John Reid.india Updated: May 29, 2006 11:11 IST
Amid controversy over the deportation of foreign prisoners in British jails, it has come to the fore that the inmates include 253 Indians and 416 Pakistanis.
Deportation of foreign prisoners is among the major issues faced by new Home Secretary John Reid.
The issue generated much heat in the House of Commons and in the media when it was revealed that many of these prisoners had committed offences after release.
Prime Minister Tony Blair said in the Commons last week that foreign prisoners would be deported to their countries of origin, irrespective of the nature of their crime.
Opposition MPs have protested that foreign prisoners had been allowed to remain in open jails after the government recently announced their deportation.
However, according to the Prison Service, there were no plans to move the prisoners held in other open jails, as none had absconded this month.
Phil Wheatley, head of the Prison Service, told The Times that many more British citizens had absconded this year than foreign citizens.
Reports say that the Prison Service cannot discriminate against prisoners simply on the ground that they are foreigners.
If they are assessed as eligible for open conditions as part of preparation for eventual release, they should be moved to an open jail if accommodation is available.
Latest government figures show that one in eight inmates in jails in England and Wales is a foreign national.
States of origin of the foreign prisoners in British jails:
Irish Republic 727