Prisoners go on hunger strike at Hindalga Jail

BELGAUM: Inmates of the Hindalga jail launched a hunger strike to protest against the alleged assault on a prisoner sentenced to capital imprisonment by a jail staff on Saturday afternoon.

The stir revealed that even after a recent raid led by Inspector S P Sandeep Patil in which about a dozen mobile phones and chargers, knives, liquor bottles, tobacco items were recovered, these items were still available in the jail.

It is said one of the prisoners had purchased a new mobile phone with the help of a jail staffer for Rs 3,000.

Allegedly, the staffer demanded Rs 3,000 extra for the phone, which the prisoner refused. However, a few days later, the prisoner paid the warden. On Saturday afternoon, the warden yet again demanded Rs 1,000 more for the mobile phone and assaulted the prisoner for refusing to give the money. He was brought out from his barrack and beaten, sources added.

The prisoners were angry over the abuse of authority of jail authorities and held a strike. They refused to eat dinner on Saturday night and continued their fast till 5 pm on Sunday. They are currently demanding food worth eating and a STD phone booth in the jail. They had presented these demands before the Human Rights Commission two years ago. Prisoners alleged that jail wardens supply tobacco and liquor and also rent out cell phones at higher prices. They alleged that the STD booth in the jail is not functioning as income of jail wardens who rent out cell phones will come down.

The jail houses a total 751 prisoners, including 43 who have been sentenced to capital imprisonment.

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