February 2018 News

High-risk Prisoners Being Shifted To Jails Outside Kashmir

19 February 2018
Rising Kashmir
Javid Ahmad

Srinagar: After the daring escape of top Lashkar-e-Toiba commander Naveed Jhatt from police captivity in SMHS hospital, the high-risk prisoners are being shifted to outside Kashmir jails and the prisons department is conducting review of jails across the state. According to sources, over 20 high-risk (militant) prisoners have been shifted to outside jails from Kashmir. Director General of Prisons, Dilbagh Singh confirmed shifting of prisoners has taken place. He, however, didn't divulge number of prisoners shifted to outside from Kashmir prisons. 'The shifting of prisoners has taken place. I don't have the number. It is an ongoing process, ,' Singh told Rising Kashmir. The prisons department was conducting a security review of jails in the state following a directive from Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA). The measures are being taken by the prisons department in the aftermath of a daring escape by Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) top Pakistani militant, Naveed Jhat from the police captivity at Srinagar's SMHS hospital where he was taken for medical check up on February 6 from Central Jail, Srinagar. Two policemen were killed when Jhatt and another militant fired on escort party at SMHS amid heavy publish rush. On Monday DG prisons inspected District Jail Anantnag, -the first visit to the jail in Kashmir after LeT militant's escape. Singh also visited special jail (Correctional Home) in Pulwama to get familiarized with the institution, its working, and security as well as infrastructure requirements viz-a-viz gadgetry up-gradation. The DG Prisons chaired a high-level security review meeting which was attended by officers of police and prisons department. The DGP Prisons instructed the Jail Superintendents to follow the security protocol and adhere to the security procedures strictly, said a police statement. Singh said the overall situation in jails was 'satisfactory'. 'There are some small issues which I m trying to identify and rectify,' he said. DG Prisons said he was reviewing security of jails after MHA directions. Before visiting Kashmir jails, Singh visited district Jail Jammu, Kathua, Udhampur and Reasi prisons in Jammu region and took stock of the situation. After Jhat's escape, the government has taken several measures to prevent any such incident in future. The prisoners, now onwards, will be taken to Police hospital in Srinagar for treatment and only in rare case prisoners would be referred to any government hospital. Besides, the prisons authorities are also streamlining prisoner-visitor meeting in Central jail. After the LeT militant's escape, government removed SK Mishra, former DG prisons and posted him as Chairman-cum-Managing Director of the Jammu and Kashmir Police Housing Corporation and appointed Dilbagh Singh as DG Prisons. The government also suspended Superintendent of Central Jail Srinagar, Hilal Ahmad and removed medical staff from the jail.