Video showing Raebareli inmates having booze inside prison
A Raebareli jail video showing inmates having drinks inside the barrack went viral on social media Monday, bringing to focus clandestine entry of liquor and firearms in prisons, months after the sensational killing of an imprisoned mafia don inside the Baghpat jail.
After local TV news channels repeatedly telecast the latest footage showing one of the inmates calling someone using a mobile phone to order liquor, and another threatening someone displaying a weapon to extract money, the authorities suspended six officials, including a senior jail superintendent.
The Uttar Pradesh government also shifted the four inmates seen in the video to other jails, Principal Secretary Home Arvind Kumar said.
An FIR has been lodged against them under various sections of the IPC and Prisons act, he said.
Kumar also said that as soon as the video came to light, the jail premises was checked by the administration and local authorities and four mobiles and a SIM card were recovered.
Jails in the state are already plagued by problems such as over-crowding, staff shortage and porous security, with frequent reports of liquor, weapons and mobile phones getting sneaked inside.
In many jails, CCTV cameras, metal detectors and manual scanners do not function properly, a committee set up to probe the state of affairs in UP prisons had state noted.
The fresh incident was reported at a time when the jail administration was in the process of upgrading prisons with multi-level security system and installation of machines to check clandestine entry of illegal weapons - both firearms and sharp-edged weapons to end the bloody battles in jails and inmates being killed while being taken to court for hearings.
It was found that CCTV cameras - the third eye - were not functioning when gangster Prem Prakash alias Munna Bajrangi was shot by a co-prisoner seven times.
A pistol, two magazines and 22 cartridges were recovered from a drain inside the Baghpat jail.
Bajrangi's murder had triggered insecurity among a dozen gangsters lodged in various jails across UP.
Notorious gangsters Atiq Ahmed, Mukim alias 'Kala', Udaibhan Singh alias 'Doctor', Titu alias Kiranpal, Rocky alias 'Kaki', Alam Singh and others have alleged threat to their life and urged to be placed in jails located in their "areas of influence".
A senior police officer said although, the dons were lodged in jails, their gangs continued to indulge in crimes like murder, kidnapping, dacoity and extortion.
A muscleman's call from jail is enough to terrorise businessmen, contractors and even government officers. Those who refuse to follow their diktats are threatened, attacked or killed, he said.
After the BJP came to power in UP in March last year, over 100 criminals were shifted from one jail to another to make their crime machinery ineffective.
(With inputs from agencies.)