Punjab CM reviews prison security, to deploy drones, CCTV cameras in all jails

Drones and CCTV cameras will be made available in all Punjab prisons as part of a slew of strong measures announced by Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh to strengthen jail security. The Chief Minister, who chaired a high-level meeting to review the prison security system, decided on sending Punjab Police intelligence officials on deputation to the jails department to assist the staff in collecting intelligence that might be vital to ensuring fool-proof security in jails.

In another important move, Captain Amarinder asked the Jails Department to formulate a comprehensive strategy to segregate undertrial gangsters and radicals from other prisoners, possibly by shifting them out to other jails outside the state. The proposal was aimed at preventing radicalisation and planning of terrorist/gangster/criminal activities from jails.

The Chief Minister also directed the DCs to visit the prisons in their respective districts once a month to ensure proper monitoring of the security arrangements and welfare measures there. The DCs have been asked to make a personal inspection to identify lacunae, if any, in the security apparatus and ensure that the same are plugged without delay, an official spokesperson said after the meeting.

He ordered all the 700 vacant posts of wardens to be filled without delay. While the government is already in process of recruiting 400 wardens, for which the Finance Department has given approval, the Chief Minister directed immediate clearance by the Department for the filling up of the remaining 300 odd vacancies also. The Chief Minister also directed making physical tests and minimum criteria of physique mandatory for recruitment of wardens, in place of the existing practice of holding only written tests for them.