Every new militant recruited only after ‘approval’ from Srinagar Central Jail, says CID report

Srinagar: A report by the Jammu and Kashmir CID has said that the Srinagar Central Jail is a hub of recruiting militants through a ‘parallel administrative set-up’ of the inmates, reported the Press Trust of India.

The report also mentioned that the role of the jail is so important that every new militant is only recruited after ‘approval’ from inside the prison.

The report however, pointed out that it is being ascertained who gives the approval.

Director General of Police SP Vaid sent the report, prepared under AG Mir, Inspector General of the state Criminal Investigation Department, to Principal Secretary (Home) Raj Kumar Goyal in 2017. He also sought stricter vigilance within the prison.

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The report mentions that the ‘parallel administrative setup’ has an ‘Ameer-e-Zindaan’ (The prison chief) who is appointed by a ‘Shura’ (council) for a period of six months.

Former director general of prison SK Mishra, who was recently shunted following the escape of Lashker-e-Taiba militant Mohammed Naveed Jhatt on 6 February, said in a lengthy reply to the report that he had long been highlighting the issue.

He said he had told the state home department about several communications to former inspector general of police (Kashmir) Munir Khan and the deputy inspector general for a through search of jail but this was not done.

In his reply to the principal home secretary, Mishra also said he had flagged issues related to poor infrastructure in the jail which does not allow for proper segregation of the inmates.

He also pointed out that due to court orders, he could not shift hardened militants and their sympathizers outside Kashmir.

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“At a time five to 20 people remain inside to guard the 300 prisoners and it cannot be expected with this thin force to discipline the inmates with iron fist…. request for deputation of 150 police personnel to supplement the requirement of security of central jail and other jails have not been considered by the government,” the reply said.

Mishra also drew attention to the role of the state law department and said “necessary directions need to be issued to Advocate-General and Additional Advocate-General in pursuing the matter of the prison department such as vacation of stay orders on transfer of prisoners and surrender of convicts who are on parole and are at large”.

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