Jail inmates using religious brochure due to paper shortage

Inmates at the overcrowded jail at the hilly north eastern state of Meghalaya here are resorting to pen their various complaints using religious brochures in view of shortage of papers, official sources said today.

Two complaint boxes were kept at the Shillong district jail here from August this year as part of the jail reforms adopted by the Meghalaya government and in keeping with the recommendation of the Human Rights Commission and directives of the Court.

“In view of the non-issuance of plain papers to them, there were instances in which religious brochures and pages from the holy religious books were used to script their complaints,” a senior official told PTI on condition of anonymity.

He said, religious scriptures were provided to them by religious leaders who frequently visit the jails with an intention to try to transform the lives of the inmates.

According to the official, the complaint boxes reach the Director General office directly and since then it has provided the much needed feedback to and fro the top office and the inmates.

Sources said some of the complaints had topics related to the daily grievances and some of them had names of the personnel manning the jail premises which could be one of the reasons the plain papers were not made readily available to the inmates.

Established in 1895 under the erstwhile British government, the Shillong district jail presently houses 320 inmates against a capacity of only 150.