Jails in Uttar Pradesh are turning into pubs for gangsters who are seen throwing liquor and gambling parties inside the barracks. Much to the embarrassment of the prison department, several photographs of prisoners, savouring non-vegetarian dishes and alcoholic drinks, are being shared on the social media.
The photographs relate to an alleged farewell party thrown on the eve of the transfer of mafia don Atiq Ahmed from Naini Central Jail to Sabarmati jail in Gujarat. The Supreme Court had instructed the Uttar Pradesh government to transfer Atiq to Gujarat. Atiq has been accused of kidnapping and torturing a businessman.
Talking to the IANS, the ADG Prison UP, Chandra Prakash confirmed that photographs are of a few dreaded gangsters who are lodged in Naini Central jail for years. "I have instructed the DIG, Prison to probe threadbare the involvement of the jail staff to ascertain how nonvegetarian dishes, liquor and smart phones, seen in the photographs, got smuggled inside the jail," he said.
On the actual date of the picture, apparently taken inside the jail, the ADG said, "As of now, we cannot ascertain the date and time. We cannot say these pictures are of the farewell party of Atiq. However, till the final report is seen by me, we can only say that it appears to be a serious breach of security and we would take strict action once it is confirmed that such a party took place inside the jail."
Though sources also revealed that gangsters were involved in betting and gambling too, jail authorities denied allegations of betting or gambling inside the barracks.
From contract killings to extortion, almost every heinous crime has been committed inside the so-called high-security jails of Uttar Pradesh. Apprehending risk to life, mafia don-turned politician Mukhtar Ansari managed to get transferred from Uttar Pradesh to a prison in Punjab, recently.
Last year, Mukhtar's close aide Munna Bajrangi was shot dead in Baghpat jail, in western Uttar Pradesh. Several such murders of undertrials have been executed inside the prison in the past five years.
On June 3, Atiq Ahmed, a former MP and a listed mafia don, was airlifted from Naini and sent to Sabarmati (Ahmedabad) jail. The DGP, UP, O.P. Singh told reporters that a special team was constituted to monitor and facilitate Atiq's shifting from Prayagraj to Ahmedabad.
Atiq Ahmed hit the news headlines when he announced that he would contest the Lok Sabha polls against Prime minister Narendra Modi from Varanasi. However, he withdrew from the polls once he was denied bail to campaign for the Lok Sabha elections.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)