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3-min read

Drug-filled Tennis Balls, Liquor Fuelling Prison Parties in Bengaluru

The liquor either enters through the main gate or through windows, with the possibility of even being thrown across the compound wall, at times. According to sources, the drugs are stuffed into a tennis ball and lobbed into the prison premises.

Nagarjun Dwarakanath | CNN-News18

Updated:July 15, 2017, 10:27 AM IST
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Bengaluru: Inmates in the Bengaluru Central Jail have been seen playing cards, consuming alcohol, abusing marijuana under the watch of prison officials, videos accessed by CNN-News18 show. The prisoners were also seen having an easy access to their mobile phones.

The liquor either enters through the main gate or through windows, with the possibility of even being thrown across the compound wall, at times. According to sources, the drugs are stuffed into a tennis ball and lobbed into the prison premises.

DIG Prisons D Roopa had earlier, in a letter to DGP (Prisons) HSN Rao, alleged that AIADMK leader VK Sasikala was getting VIP treatment in jail and that there were rumours she paid huge bribes to officials.

The report, accessed by CNN-News18, also said other convicts, like stamp paper scam accused Abdul Karim Telgi, too, get special facilities. Telgi has three undertrials assigned to give him a massage. Roopa's letter also shed light on how inmates were abusing drugs. Seventeen of 25 prisoners tested positive for Marijuana.

Former Karnataka chief minister Jagadish Shettar told CNN-News18, "We will create public awareness about this. We want a judicial inquiry as only this can give us a fair result.”

DG (Prisons) Sathyanarayana Rao had said that officials were trying their best to curb the movement of drugs and alcohol into the prison but needed more effort to completely stop it.

Following are the important excerpts from her letter:

1) A special kitchen set up for VK Sasikala, violating jail rules.

2) There are rumours that this issue was brought to your (DG's) notice and yet this is being continued. It is being said that Rs 2 crore bribe has been paid by her to ensure her comfort in the jail. Such accusations are grave, and I request you to pay heed and take action against errant officials.

3) You (DGP) have been interfering with my work ever since I took charge. On 11th July, I got your memo that sought explanation on why I went to Central Jail on 10th July. I have full powers to enquire into happenings in the Central Jail -- but such memos sent by you require introspection on the functioning of the jail administration itself.

4) Convicts like Abdul Kareem Telgi have enjoyed the comfort of three or four undertrials to serve him, even do tasks like massaging his feet. Six months ago, he needed the assistance of a wheelchair, and the court allowed it. But why are undertrials assigned to help him in his cell now? I believe you too are able to watch this on the CCTV connected to your chamber. Why has no action been taken?

5) On 29th June, ten medical staff, including the chief medical officer, were attacked by one inmate. The inmate even tried to hit the chief medical officer with an iron stool. The guard on duty was missing. No action against him as yet.

6) We tested 25 inmates for drugs on suspicion; shockingly, 18 of them tested positive for ganja. However, no action has been taken to curb free flow of ganja in jail premises.

7) Jail inmates are deployed to manage medical records -- so some records to be presented in court go missing.

8) Jail inmates are also deployed at the jail pharmacy -- and certain medicines like sleeping pills are given out easily.

9) Doctors are threatened by inmates to give reports that enable them to be admitted to hospitals outside the jail -- they even face life threats. No action by jail officials.

10) HSN Rao said he is not aware of such allegations as the report never reached him. He told News18 it is impossible that Sasikala could get a special treatment. He also said he had asked DIG Roopa for an explanation, which he hasn't received till date.

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