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Lifer in Bengal jail wants to donate Rs 1 lakh for Kerala flood victims

The correctional services minister said he will approve the application as soon as it reaches his table.

kolkata Updated: Aug 30, 2018 10:32 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
The Kerala floods have damaged more than 10,000 km of roads and 1 lakh houses.(AP Photo)

Sheikh Aziz, a septuagenarian inmate in Kolkata’s Alipore Central Jail has applied to donate Rs 1 lakh -- a part of the wages he has earned down the years behind the bars -- for the flood victims of Kerala.

“It’s an excellent gesture. As soon as the proposal reaches my table, I shall clear it,” Ujjal Biswas, minister of the correctional services department.

Read: Kerala floods: NASA’s before and after satellite images show scale of devastation

According to jail officials, Aziz hails from Kerala, a fact that he never revealed to anybody. Never did anyone from that state visit him in jail.

Jail inmates are paid wages that range from Rs 200 to Rs 280 for eight hours of labour a day depending on the type of labour.

The proposal has to be routed through the jail super, the director general of correctional services department and the secretary of the department before it reaches the minister’s table.

Read: Deposit money in Kerala floods relief fund, Jharkhand HC condition for bail

Aziz’s application has already been sent to Arun Gupta, the DG.

The inmate is serving life sentence after he was convicted in the Bowbazar blast case of March 16, 1993. The incident in one of the most infamous in Kolkata in which as many as 69 people lost their lives, when bombs stored in a building in crowded Bowbazar area of central Kolkata exploded bringing down the structure.

Key accused in that case, Rashid Khan, is also behind the bars. Aziz was a close aide of Khan and used to follow him.

Read: Kerala floods recovery to take years as 10,000 km of roads washed away, 1 lakh houses damaged

Aziz has spent more than quarter of a century in the jail.

According to rule, half of the wages jail inmates earn is given to them, while the other half is deposited in their bank accounts. It is the amount saved in the bank that Aziz wants to send to Kerala.

In the second week of August inmates of Kannur central jail donated Rs 4.5 lakh to the Kerala chief minister’s relief fund.

Read: HAM radio operators help trace more than 800 in flood-hit Kerala

On August 27, the Jharkhand High Court granted anticipatory bail to three persons on the condition that they donate Rs 7,000 to the Kerala Chief Minister’s Relief Fund.

In the second week of August, a nine-year-old girl from Tamil Nadu donated the money she saved for four years to buy a cycle.

First Published: Aug 30, 2018 10:32 IST