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30 Jan 2015

Mr. Alok Kumar Verma (IPS)

Office of the Director General of Prisons

Prison Headquaters

Near Lajwanti Garden Chowk. 


New Delhi-110064


Subject: Request for permission to carry out a survey of the jail conditions

Dear Sir

People's Union for Democratic Rights (PUDR) is a Delhi based civil liberties organisation and has been working in Delhi since 1977. We have been urging your office to allow us to take a look at jail conditions especially of the jail inmates. The news report about the death of twenty year old Chandar in Jail No. 2 of Tihar Central Jail on 13 January 2015, on the very day he was to come out on bail, makes our request to you of some urgency.

Your website itself admits that although Tihar Jail's capacity is for 6250 inmates, it currently has 13552 inmates. And this number itself can be dated since it based on data from 2013. Overcrowding of jails, especially with an under-trial population at 10,154 or nearly 77 per cent of the inmates, severely impairs the role of Jails as an institution which reforms and rehabilitates prisoners.

This is to request you to cooperate with us and allow us to carry out a survey of the jail conditions. We believe that our independent study would only enhance rather than harm the Tihar Prison department from carrying out its responsibility.

We look forward to your response.

Yours sincerely

(Sharmila Purkayashtha and Megha Bahl)

Secretaries, PUDR

Copy to:

Lieutenant Governor of Delhi Sh. Najeeb Jung.