If you’re a travel enthusiast who enjoys unique and local accommodations, you might have a new experience to add to your bucket list. In Uttarakhand, tourists are all set to experience ‘real jail’ time by spending Rs 500 a night. According to the Times of India, the Haldwani prison, built in 1903, is now over 100 years old and a section of its building is being prepared to receive guests and tourists. The section consists of the old armoury with six staff quarters, all of which had been abandoned for a long time. The jail often received “orders” from officials to allow “recommended persons” to spend time at the prison.
The initiative seemed to have an astrological aspect to it as a few people are advised by astrologers to spend time in prison to ward off ‘bandhan yog’, a belief that prophesizes that the person in question will be incarcerated at some point in the future. The prison’s deputy jail superintendent Satish Sukhija told TOI, “All such cases are mainly of people whose astrologers predict that a jail term is inevitable as per the planetary positions in their horoscope.”
Sukhija also mentioned that he had moved a proposal regarding the matter earlier to senior officials. He said that his seniors not only appreciated the gesture but also instructed him to submit a fully detailed project report. ‘Bandhan yog’ in Indian astrological charts usually refers to a bit of jail time, which, according to beliefs can be prevented by taking recommended measures.
According to astrologer Mrityunjay Ojha—” when three celestial bodies are placed in an unfavourable position in one’s birth chart, it becomes an equation that predicts the person may have to undergo imprisonment.” He went on to explain,” In such a situation, we usually advise the subject to spend a night in jail and have the meal provided to inmates so as to bypass the bad effects.”
The official also revealed that the ‘tourist prisoners’ are provided with food and clothing from the prison. The clothes are real prison uniforms as well.