Dhanbad jailer Mohammed Israel at a private clinic in Bartand after Sunday’s assault. Picture by Gautam Dey
Angry over a rule that bar them from meeting family members on a Sunday, a dozen inmates of Dhanbad Divisional Jail grievously assaulted the jailer to underscore how vulnerable state prisons were to muscle power.
Jailer Mohammed Israel, who dislocated his right shoulder in the attack, has been admitted to a private nursing home near Bartand area of the coal town.
Trouble started brewing around 9.30am when undertrials Sher Khan and Chiku Khan — kin of Wasseypur’s iron scrap mafia boss Fahim Khan — led inmates to the main gate and demanded that they be allowed to meet their relatives.
A constable deputed near the gate tried to stop them, but faced angry slogans.
Alarmed by the ruckus, the jailer rushed to control the situation. The irate prisoners began pushing and shoving Israel who collapsed on the ground and injured his shoulder.
The attack sent the jail alarm ringing and prompted senior officers, including jail superintendent S.C. Jha, to take stock of the situation. Jha ordered security guards to send the prisoners back to their allotted cells.
“The jailer had intervened when some prisoners, led by Sher Khan and Chiku Khan, began misbehaving with the constable at the main gate. He was attacked and has been hospitalised with shoulder injuries,” said Jha.
He added that appropriate action would be taken against the guilty.
The prison administration has lodged FIRs with Dhanbad Sadar police against undertrials Sher Khan, Chiku Khan and 10 others.
While Sher Khan is the younger brother of Fahim Khan, Chiku Khan is the mafia boss’s nephew. Both were arrested in murder cases. The former is under trial for two years and the latter is facing probe for the past three months.
Dhanbad Divisional Jail, currently, hosts 1,100 prisoners, including 50 women.
The prison has a sanctioned strength of 64 personnel, but is manned by 30. The list includes a jail super, a jailer, a head warder, 26 warders and one wardress for the female inmates. There are 20 Home Guard jawans for security.
How can jail security be improved in the state?