Saturday, April 04, 2009

Jail official held for assaulting IAS officer

4 Apr 2009, 0201 hrs IST, Amitabh Tiwari, TNN

RAIPUR: A young IAS officer on a snap inspection of a central jail in Chhattisgarh was assaulted by its superintendent who was annoyed by the sudden

Sources said P Dayanand, who is holding the additional charge of sub-divisional officer (SDO), was inspecting the Ambikapur central jail following complaints of irregularities. He found many banned articles like mobile phones and weapons inside the jail premises.

The SDO soon summoned jail superintendent Rajendra Gayakwad, who at that time was on a video-conference with his superiors. Dayanand then asked him to open the prison's chest for inspection. However, the superintendent refused.

After a heated exchange, Gayakwad assaulted the SDO. But the jail superintendent was overpowered and arrested by police personnel accompanying Dayanand. Soon DM Rohit Yadav and SP H K Rathore reached the jail.

But by that time, the jail inmates had gathered and started raising slogans against the district administration. They were pacified by CRPF and CISF jawans deployed in the state to control Maoists.

Ambikapur SP Rathore told TOI that the recovery of mobile phones and weapons was "disturbing'' in view of past incidents of jailbreaks in Chhattisgarh. As many as 1,534 inmates, including about 60 hardcore Maoists, are lodged in Ambikapur prison. Several serious incidents have taken place in the jail in the past.

One of the biggest-ever jailbreaks in India had taken place in Dantewada jail on December 16, 2007, when 299 inmates, including more than 105 Maoists and their sympathisers had fled. Inmates have also fled from Jashpur, Surguja and Surajpur and Durg jails.

According to a senior jail officer, the department drew up schemes to install jammers to prevent use of mobile phones. But so far, jammers have not been installed even in big jails where hardcore Maoists are lodged, he said.

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