Dip in occupancy rate brings no relief to overcrowded Tihar jail

The scene Central Tihar Jail Gate no 3, in New Delhi on Decembrer 12, 2019. Photo: Shiv Kumar Pushpakar   | Photo Credit: Shiv Kumar Pushpakar

The occupancy rate in Tihar jail has lowered by over 70% since 2015, but the issue of overcrowding in the prison is a problem that persists, Prison Statistics released by the National Crime Records Bureau has stated.

According to the data, in 2018, the capacity of Tihar jail was 10,026 and the number of inmates was 15,468 that led to the occupancy rate of 154.3% with 16 jail. In 2015, the occupancy rate was 226.9% with 10 jails, the capacity being 6,250 and the number of inmates being 14,183.

The situation got better in 2016 after Mandoli Prison Complex was inaugurated and the number of prisons increased from 10 to 12. The occupancy rate lowered to 179.8% in 2016 with 14,058 inmates and a capacity of 7,818.

In 2017, the number of prisons increased to 16 and the capacity increased to 10,026. The occupancy rate also lowered to 151.2% with 15,161 inmates.

However, like in 2017, Delhi recorded the third highest occupancy rate in the country in 2018 as well and also had the most overcrowded jail among the Union Territories. Among the States, prisons in Uttar Pradesh were the most overcrowded (176.5%) followed by Sikkim (157.3%) and Chhattisgarh (153.3%), the report said.

Responding to the issue of overcrowding, Tihar Director General Sandeep Goel admitted that overcrowding is a persistent problem and as on January 10, the occupancy rate was 175%. A few remedies, including building a new prison complex, however, are being considered. “To increase the lodging capacity, it is being considered that land be procured in Narela and a new prison complex be built there. Another plan that is being considered for future is that existing jails with single storey be turned into double and triple storey,” he said.

Overcrowding in prisons leads to issues like poor hygiene, lack of sleep, among others. Keeping in view the human rights of the prisoners, it is essential that they are given reasonable space and facilities in jails, the report noted. In the recent years, overcrowding is one of the biggest problems being faced by prison inmates.

Our code of editorial values

This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

Printable version | Aug 6, 2021 6:10:30 AM |

Next Story