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Rs.5.29 crores for constructing women's jail

By Our Staff Reporter

TIRUCHI, JUNE 14 . The Centre has sanctioned Rs.5.29 crores for constructing an exclusive Women's Jail in Tiruchi to house women convicts and prisoners in the Central and Southern districts.

A proposal to convert the existing special sub-jail on the Gandhi Market premises into the Women's Prison at a cost of Rs. 9.9 crores was forwarded to the Central and State Governments nearly over seven years ago, official sources said, adding that the sanctioned amount constituted the Centre's share. The construction works would begin in three months. The sanction of the amount was notified vide Government Order 652, issued on May 18, 2004, the Deputy Inspector General of Prisons, T. Kumarasamy, told The Hindu .

The new Women's Prison would have several facilities, including workshops for making paper bags, gem cutting, tailoring, screen printing etc., a balwadi, a school, and a computer centre. The Women's Prison now functions in a portion of the Central Prisons Complex in a congested atmosphere. Against a capacity of 101 inmates, over 400 prisoners, including 90 odd convicts are being housed there. Due to overcrowding, a section of women remand prisoners are being housed in the special sub jail.

Now that the project has been given a go-ahead, official sources said, the special sub-jail, basically meant for housing men remand prisoners, will be shifted to the portion where the Women's Prison functions now.

Highly placed sources said there was a rethink on the part of the local officials that the Women's Prisons could be constructed on the vast premises of the Central Prisons. The reason was that centralised security arrangements could be made, instead of having a separate security paraphernalia associated with high-security prisons. However, since the project has come through, there is now no possibility to make any changes, sources said.

The work on construction of the new Women's Prison at the Gandhi Market would take nearly a year for completion, sources added.

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