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Porous walls helped inmates escape, Tihar blames PWD

Facing a tough time with rampant violence and violations — and then a <g data-gr-id="44">jail break</g> reported in the past one month, the Tihar prison authorities are now blaming the Public Work Department (PWD) for their share of alleged negligence not only in the recent jail break but also in other issues, a senior official said on Tuesday.

He further said once the report of the probe taken up by the jail authorities is prepared (which is expected in a day or two), the prison authorities are going to write to the government of NCT of Delhi, asking them to pull up PWD. The duo, Faizan (who got caught) and <g data-gr-id="35">Javeid</g> (who managed to escape), had reportedly made a two square-feet hole in the third prison wall — which was about two feet in breadth — with the help of a rock stone smuggled from inside the jail premises. “To enhance security, this wall was built in 2004 and never renovated after that. A close look after the <g data-gr-id="36">jail break</g> showed that the bricks had become too brittle and there was hardly any trace of cement. There are problems in its construction and it is now a part of the probe initiated by us,” said the senior official. 

He further said that PWD was also entrusted with the renovation of the high-security ward in jail number two (which houses mostly persons jailed in connection with terrorism activities). For this, as many as 40 inmates were transferred to jails 1, 3, 4 and 5 around six months ago. 

“When asked, PWD reports: Work still in progress. Temporary lodging of prisoners is a big problem in jails that are already overcrowded. That too, when we are dealing with inmates who are supposed to be put under special security arrangement,” the official added. <g data-gr-id="30">Also</g> the jail authorities claimed that they had written to PWD several times to clear the debris accumulated near peripheral walls. 

“This function comes under a standing Standard of Procedure in fact. However, the agency <g data-gr-id="28">have</g> often allegedly failed to respond. In the jail break incident, such uncleared debris gave almost four feet leverage to the inmates in scaling a wall of around 14 feet height,” the official added.
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