Chandigarh: The Jail Department of Punjab has taken a major initiative under which the spouses of well-behaved prisoners in select jails will be able to spend some time in jail.

Confirming this, Punjab Additional DGP (Prisons) Harpreet Singh Sidhu said that the initiative has been launched from Tuesday itself and initially the facility has been extended to Central Jail Goindwal Sahib, New Jail nabha and Women’s Jail in Bathinda.

Jail department officials have also made it clear that the facility will not be provided to prisoners, gangsters or prisoners who are considered to be under the risk zone on charges of heinous crimes.

The state prisons department has claimed that Punjab is the first state to provide such a facility for well-behaved prisoners and usually such facilities are provided in jails in western countries. Officials say that first of all, this facility will be given to such prisoners who have been locked in the jail’s boundary wall for a long time.

Inmates in the jail should be given two hours to spend time with their spouses and for this, a room has been allotted separately with a bathroom facility.

This facility will be given to a prisoner once in three months. Officials say that this initiative will not only improve the personal family relations of the long-serving prisoners in the jail, but the prisoners will feel the need to have good conduct in the jails and the number of prisoners with good conduct is sure to increase in the future.

It will be mandatory for a prisoner lodged in the jail, whoever is a woman or a man, to give proof of being a life partner. Along with this, only after the medical certificate is given, partner of inmate will be entitled to this special visit.

It has been instructed to take special care of diseases like AIDS, HIV or Covid in particular. He said that the purpose of launching such programmes is to make the jails a de facto correctional home so that no one turns to crime after completion of the sentence.

Open visit facility yielded good results: ADGP

Additional DGP (Prisons) Harpreet Singh Sidhu said that during the last few days, a program was started for prisoners and inmates to meet the entire family members in the open premises of the jails, which has yielded fruitful results. After this, a new program has been started.

He said that usually in jails, prisoners or referrals used to meet behind the bars, but now five members of the family and four young children can meet sitting in the open premises and can also get food and drink facilities together.

The Additional DGP (Prisons) says that there are a large number of prisoners in the jails of Punjab who used to meet the family members only behind bars for the last 5-5 years and did not get it openly.

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