Raipur, 07 April 2020 । Chief Minister Mr. Bhupesh Baghel today spoke to prisoners in various jails of the state, from his residence office via video conferencing, to take information about the arrangements made and preventive measures taken to prevent corona infection. Chief Minister spoke to five Central Jails, District Jails and Sub-Jails of the state, including Central Jail of capital city Raipur. Chief Minister directed to ensure strict compliance to the precautionary measures such as social distancing, wearing masks and hand-washing frequently in Jails. On the occasion, Home and Jail Minister Mr. Tamradhwaj Sahu, Additional Chief Secretary of Chief Minister Mr. Subrat Sahu also joined the video conference.
Chief Minister is taking account of condition of various sections of society via video conference, for prevention of corona virus infection. Chief Minister today took note of condition of prisoners in Jails today. He asked the officials concerned about the status of cleanliness in jails, health of prisoners, food arrangements, visitors arrangements, healthy entertainment, legal aid for prisoners and release of prisoners, and small industries in jails. Chief Minister spoke during the discussion with officials and prisoners of various jails that CoVID-19 is a pandemic, and for this, prevention is the cure for this pandemic. He said that precautionary measures should be strictly followed for prevention of this pandemic. It is known that there are five central jails, 12 district jails and 16 sub-jails, with total accommodation capacity of 12 thousand 823, against which 17 thousand 131 prisoners (8151 sentenced and 8980 under trial) are in jails as on April 1, 2020.
Chief Minister Mr. Baghel gave instructions to ensure health check-up of all the prisoners and provide other necessary health facilities in jails for them to prevent corona virus infection among prisoners. He directed that the new prisoners should be kept in separate wards. During the video conference, Officials informed that to prevent spread of corona virus infection among prisoners in jails, regular cleaning of jail premise and wards are being ensured, and also masks, soaps and hygiene products have been provided in additional quantity.  Prisoners have been directed to maintain personal hygiene as well.
Chief Minister Mr. Baghel also took information about food arrangements, visitors arrangements and healthy entertainment arrangements for prisoners. Officials informed that prisoners are being provided freshly-cooked food as per the rules. Daily different vegetables are being provided, to enhance their immunity. Till 14 April 2020, prisoners are not being allowed to meet their family members or visitors. In this case, prisoners are being allowed to talk to their families through calling system. Officials informed that colour television, radios, chess games, carom, newspapers-magazines and educational books are being provided for healthy entertainment of prisoners.
Chief Minister Mr. Bhupesh Baghel also reviewed the training of dignified livelihood and rehabilitation being provided to prisoners about to be released from jails and the prisoners released from jails as on April 5, 2020, on Honourable Supreme Court’s orders. Officials informed that as per the orders of Honourable Supreme Court, total 1193 prisoners have been released as on 5 April 2020, which includes 892 prisoners released on interim/regular bail and 255 prisoners on parole and 46 prisoners who have completed the term of sentence. Officials informed that these prisoners of various jails of the state are being provided training in dignified means of livelihood such as skills of iron industries, wooden art, weaving, stitching, powerloom, offset-printing machines etc,  so that they may join the mainstream of society after release. Mr. Baghel has given instructions to ensure social distancing between prisoners in jails during training.