Two prisoners found dead in Tihar

Drug consumption suspected cause

Two convicts, including one serving a life sentence, died under mysterious circumstances at Delhi’s Tihar Jail on Thursday morning. While jail authorities suspected that the prisoners died after sniffing drugs, police said they are probing all possibilities.

 Following the deaths, the Delhi Government suspended a head warder of the jail and ordered a judicial probe by a metropolitan magistrate into the incident.Delhi Home Minister Satyendra Jain summoned the jail authorities and directed them to submit a detailed report about the incident.

The victims have been identified as Ritesh Mittal, 32, and 26-year-old Amit.Ritesh was undergoing a life imprisonment for a murder and had already served 11 years in jail.  Amit was serving eight years after being convicted in an attempt to murder case.The prison authorities were informed on Thursday morning that Ritesh and Amit were lying in an unresponsive state at jail number 8.

They were immediately rushed to the hospital clinic and from there to Deen Dayal Upadhyay Hospital. Doctors attempted to revive them, but had to declare them dead soon. Jail authorities have claimed that the victims’ fellow inmates have informed them that Ritesh and Amit were seen sniffing some drug late in the night. “The other prisoners advised them not to indulge in the act as it could prove fatal, but they did not pay heed to their warning. They were declared dead at 9.30 am,” said a jail official.

Police were informed and investigations began. Among other things being probed is how the drugs were smuggled into the high-security prison.A police officer told Deccan Herald that they are also ruling out the possibility of a murder due to personal rivalry.

“For now, we are awaiting the autopsy report to determine if they died due to drugs consumption or any other reason,” said the officer.

The latest deaths take the count to three in Tihar Jail since Monday afternoon when undertrial Ajay was stabbed to death by three fellow prisoners over personal enmity.Meanwhile, the Delhi government has expressed concerns over the security arrangements inside the prison.

The government, in a release on Thursday, said a committee headed by G Sudhakar, secretary to the Delhi home minister, will review the security arrangements inside the jail and will submit its report within a week. Sudhakar has previously served as the DIG (Prisons).

Jain also directed officials to expedite the completion of Mandoli Jail in east Delhi in order to quickly decongest Tihar Jail.

The delay in completion of the new jail has been repeatedly cited as one of the main reasons behind the problems inside Tihar, the release stated.DH News Service

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