Maha struggling to find land for new jail
Finding land in Mumbai is as difficult for state government officials as it is for the common man.
The prisons department has been finding it tough to locate land for an additional jail.
The overcrowded Arthur Road jail means the state has to build a new jail soon.
The jail, which has a capacity of 804, has 1,735 inmates lodged there.
Sources in the prisons department said after the government nod for the new jail, they have been trying hard to find land across the city to no avail.
“Mostly, the land available belongs to the government and officials have written to various state and government departments to help them on this front,” a source said, adding that prison department officials were also looking at land on which many shut mills stood.
However, they have had limited success as acquiring land from other government departments is a long process.
Also, building a jail involves many security aspects such as officials having to check if there are any high security installations in the vicinity or have to ensure that high-rises are not located near by, which could breach security.
Thane jail, which has a capac ity of 1,105, houses nearly twice the number of under-trials and convicts, while the Taloja jail in Navi Mumbai with a capacity o 2,124 has only around 1,000 inmates lodged there.
Sources said with Thane and Taloja jails, there were problems of transporting inmates to courts in Mumbai and hospitals and there have also been cases of gangsters allegedly running rackets from inside these jails.