IN A major step towards prison reforms, the Uttar Pradesh Cabinet on Tuesday cleared a proposal to replace Uttar Pradesh Prison Manual  of pre-Independence era, with the Uttar Pradesh Prison Manual 2022.
According to sources, the new manual would ensure a well-equipped armed force along with state-of-the-art anti-riot equipment at prisons, apart from better grooming, food and health facilities for inmates as well as allowing children to live inside jails with their mothers till the age of 6.
The UP Jail Manual 2022 proposes creche, proper education, medical, vaccination for children aged between three years to six years of age living with women prisoners in jail. It also proposes admission of such children from the ages four to six to any educational institute outside the jail after obtaining their mother’s consent. A provision has also been made to provide sanitary napkins to women prisoners and special medical facilities to pregnant prisoners.
In case of death of any blood relative or spouse of the prisoner, arrangement has been made to allow “antim darshan”. A deputy jailor level officer in each prison will be designated as prison welfare officer who, along with the superintendent and jailor, will be responsible for ensuring smooth implementation of welfare, care and rehabilitation programmes. Minister of State for Prisons, Dharamveer Prajapati informed that unlike in the past, when prisons were defined with the kind of town that they were in, now the prisons would be categorised based on the strength of the prisoner. Adding that some of the provisions of the previous manual that were “outdated”, such as those on imprisonment of prisoners from royal family, prisoners from Nepal, Bhutan, Kashmir etc, would not be in the new manual.