With the success of Poojappura chapattis, jail authorities are considering a bakery unit.

The queues in front of the Central Prison at Poojappura are getting longer these days, and for all the right reasons.

First it was the ‘Poojappura Chapatti' that proved an instant hit with the public. On Wednesday, it was ‘Poojappura chicken curry' that wooed the foodies in the capital city to the prison. At a mouth-watering price of Rs.25 for five chapathis and a curry, the cash registers kept ringing through the day.

The jail authorities apparently believe that diversification is central to carry on with this success story. So they are planning to give lessons in baking to select inmates. Needless to say, there is a ‘Poojappura' bakery is in the offing.

“The success of selling chapattis and curry (both vegetable and chicken) has been tremendous. On New Year eve, we made a record by selling 26,500 chapattis and this turned out to be a profitable venture. This encouraged us to think of starting a bakery unit, and the proposal was sanctioned by the government,” said jail superintendent B. Pradeep.

The authorities are in the final stages of purchasing gadgets for the bakery unit.

The automated chapatti-making machine introduced in the jail in April, 2011, churns out approximately 2,000 chapattis in about 2 hours. More than 100 inmates are involved in this process.

With increasing demand, a commercial launch was made in November, 2011. Today, there is a choice between a vegetable curry and a chicken curry to go with the chapattis. “This is our way of helping the society to get quality food at affordable price”, said Mr. Pradeep.

The jail authorities seem happy that many internal issues and unrest among the inmates have eased over time as there is increasing opportunities for constructive interaction.

The revenue generated is used for welfare of the prisoners.

The authorities have taken care to ensure that the production process is carried out in the most hygienic environment. Currently chicken for the curry is brought from the Kerala State Poultry Development Corporation, and vegetables are supplied by the Horticulture Mission. But the authorities have taken all initiatives to start a farming and poultry unit to make them self sufficient. A total of 30 acres of land at the Open Jail and 20 acres at the Central Jail have been allotted for this purpose.