The objective of reformation in Jails is that the prisoners on their release may rehabilitate themselves as good citizens in the society with gainful employment for earning their livelihood and even during their sentence, they can go out for work to earn their livelihood, render assistance to their family members, support their children to pursue education and interact with their family members easily. The medical facilities, the living conditions in Jails, the training of Jails Staff and the several reformative measures initiated in the department in the direction of reforming prisoners by introducing “Open Air Scheme in more Jails”, “Mobile Canteens run by the prisoners”, “Video Conferencing facility between the general public and inmates” and “Dairy Farming” in Jails etc. played a pivotal role in the reformation process, as detailed here under: -
(a) Medical facilities in Jails:
Whole time Doctors are posted, one each, in Central Jails at Kanda (Shimla), &Nahan, LalaLajpat Rai District and Open Air Correctional Home, Dharamshala and Open Air Jail Bilaspur.Doctors from Local Civil Hospitals visit the remaining Jails on part-time for the medical check-up/treatment of the prisoners lodged there. One post of Dispenser/Pharmacist has also been sanctioned for each of the Jails/Sub Jails to assist the Doctors. In cases of serious illness, prisoners are sent to the District Hospitals, Indira Gandhi Medical College Shimla, PGI Chandigarh and the Hospitals situated in New Delhi. Mentally ill prisoners are sent to Mental Hospital Boileuganj, Shimla-171005, Himachal Pradesh. Expenditure on medical treatment is borne by the Government. Special medical check-up camps are organized by the Doctors of Indira Gandhi Medical College Shimla and voluntary organizations to treat the ailing prisoners.
(b) HIV and TB Profiling of Inmates: -
i. HIV Screening: -
Himachal Pradesh Prisons is the only Prison Department in the Country where HIV and TB profiling of all inmates have been conducted. Integrated Counseling and Testing Centers (ICTC) have been opened in all the prisons of Himachal Pradesh where proper counseling and awareness by the professionals are being provided. Total 23 HIV camps were organized in all the prisons, in which, 2013 inmates were tested out of which 06 were found positive. ii. TB Screening:-
Regular screening for TB in all prisons is conducted regularly. Total 1815 inmates have been screened in ICTC out of which 4 inmates diagnosed TB and initiated DOTs (Directly Observed Treatment Short Course).
(c) Female Inmates and their Children:-
Himachal Pradesh Prisons are the only such organization in the country that has taken the bold initiative of finding jobs for incarcerated women outside the prisons. At the time, four female prisoners are going outside the prison and earning wages. The Open Air Jail program is working in all the prisons of Himachal Pradesh. There is no serious disease to women inmates and not a single case of TB is noticed among women inmates in Himachal Pradesh.
Alive to the health and hygiene requirements of women inmates, the Prisons Department has started a Sanitary Napkin making unit in Model Central Jail, Nahan and napkins are being provided to all women inmates of Himachal Pradesh, free of charge.
(e)Crèche to Children: -
Crèche has been opened for proper development of children of female prisoners. The children are also provided with balanced diet. Preeducation is also being provided to the Children.
(f) Diagnostic Labs: -
Five diagnostic laboratories have been opened in five different prisons of Himachal Pradesh where Hepatitis, CBS, Lipid Profile, B. Group, LFT, Sugar, EFR, KFT and Uric Acid tests are being done regularly. The Department is extending three more labs in three another prisons. 12 inmates of Hepatitis B and 06 inmates of Hepatitis C have been found in the prisons. Proper medical care is being provided to these prisoners.
(g) Drinking Water: -
Aqua guards and ROs were installed to ensure availability of clean drinking water to the inmates. The water samples from all the prisons have also been tested and as per the Laboratory Test Reports, the drinking water being supplied to the prisoners meets all the parameters. In the last 03 years, there has been no water borne disease reported from any prisons of Himachal Pradesh.
(h) Open Air Gym
With a motive to improve the physical as well as mental health of the prisoners. Open Air Gym has been established in Model Central Jail Kanda Kanda, Nahan and Lala Lajpat Rai, District and Open Air Correctional Home,Dharamshala.These Gyms are benefiting the prisoners to reduce their stress level and are helpful to make them physically fit.
The project of e-peshi has been introduced by the State Government between the Hon’ble Courts and the concerned Jails for the purpose of Court hearing of under trial prisoners and for those whom extension of judicial remand is to be sought by producing them before the judicial magistrates, virtually through Video Conferencing. This project is being utilized successfully in all the Jails of Himachal Pradesh. It has reduced the huge cost and deployment of manpower involved in the transportation and security arrangements for physically producing these persons in various Courts across the State.
TRAINING OF JAIL STAFF:
The Jail Officers/Officials of the status of Superintendent Jail/Deputy Superintendent Jail/ Assistant Superintendent Jail and Head Warders/Warders are deputed to undergo in-service training in different disciplines of PrisonsManagement & Correctional work/administration at Sampurnanand Jail Training Institute Lucknow (U.P.) and Punjab Jail Training Institute Patiala as there is no Jail Training Institution in the State. However, during the year 2019, 139 newly recruited warders were imparted 04 months training from Police Training College,Daroh(Dist. Kangra) on the syllabus prescribed by Sampurnanand Jail Training Institute Lucknow (U.P.) with the prior approval of the State Government as the training of Prisons officials in the State Police Training Institute is economical and better in quality. In addition to it, the Officers/officials of the department are also deputed for short term courses for 03 to 05 days’ duration to Regional Institute of Correctional Administration, Chandigarh and the Himachal Pradesh Institute of Public Administration, Fair Lawns Shimla-171012.
FREE LEGAL AID FACILITY
The prisoners are provided copies of decisions by the respective Superintendent Jails at the Govt. expense for the purpose of filing appeals and petitions in the Hon’ble Courts of Law.
Library is available in all the Jails of the State. Books and Newspapers are also provided in all the Jails/Sub Jails of the State for improving the knowledge and recreation of inmates.
Prisoners lodged in the Jails are provided stationery articles at Govt. expense. In special circumstances, the prisoners are permitted to appear in academic examinations by granting them parole/furlough.