Roopa not aware of prison rules, says DGP, denies charges

Roopa not aware of prison rules, says DGP, denies charges

Rao suspects DIG targeting him as he issued memos to her

Roopa not aware of prison rules, says DGP, denies charges
A day after DIG Prisons (Administration) D Roopa submitted a report on corruption in the Bengaluru Central Prison at Parappana Agrahara, DGP (Prisons) H N Sathyanarayana Rao on Thursday termed her an “amateur and unaware of prison rules’’.

The brewing discontent between the two came to the fore when Roopa, in a report, pointed at irregularities in the prison and rumours about exchange of Rs 2 crore with prison authorities to provide special services to AIADMK leader V K Sasikala, a convict in a disproportionate assets case.  

“It is a little over two weeks since she was posted to the department and she still has to learn and understand the prison manual and how the department functions,’’ he said at a media conference on Thursday.

Suspecting a conspiracy against him, Rao assumed that the ugly spat with her could be because he sent two memos to her recently. The first memo advised her not to post photographs or videos shot inside the prison on social media networking sites and the second memo was for not attending the chief minister’s review meeting held on Saturday (July 10).

Rao said Roopa’s report was sent to his office after office hours on Wednesday. He also told reporters that Roopa had leaked sensitive information to the media even before bringing it to the notice of her seniors.

Rao got his hands on the report only on Thursday morning and said she had written the report based on rumours and there are no new revelations by her in the report. “We are contemplating taking legal action against the officer,” Rao added, giving a point-by-point rebuttal to Roopa’s report.

‘Nothing new in report’

The DIG’s report had a mention of two separate incidents of assault on a doctor and a nurse at the jail hospital. Rao clarified that a doctor was assaulted by a prisoner on June 26 at the jail hospital over a trivial issue and the police are investigating the case. “The case of a nurse being manhandled by a prisoner has not come to our knowledge and if it does, we will take action,” Rao added.

Drug menace

Over allegations that 18 prisoners tested positive for drugs, Rao said a good number of undertrials who get admitted are drug addicts.  Due to their addiction, there are constant attempts to smuggle drugs into the prison, which has been curbed to a large extent.  Smugglers are caught and booked, he said.

‘No massages for Telgi’

On allegations that fake stamp paper kingpin Abdul Karim Telgi having an undertrial attendant and getting massages from undertrial prisoners, Rao said that due to his ailments, the court allowed him to have an attender.

According to the prison manual, well behaved convicts can be used for such services. And on allegations that prisoners maintain medical records at the jail hospital, Rao said that according to the jail manual, convicts with a record of good conduct can be used for such services.

‘No special treatment’

On allegations about special treatment for Sasikala and corruption charges against him, Rao said: “Forget taking bribes, we don’t allow visitations even if MPs, ministers or MLAs from Tamil Nadu use their influence and call us to facilitate visiting her. Allegations of bribes are based on a rumour in her report. Let her come up with evidence and I am ready for any probe,” Rao said.

Allegations of Sasikala having a cook or aide and a kitchen in her cell are untrue, he said. “She is lodged at the ordinary woman’s barrack on the first floor and she consumes jail food which is specially packed for her from the jail kitchen to prevent anyone attempting to poison it,” Rao added.

DIG prison’s stand

Meanwhile, Roopa said she did not want to discuss anything about the report as it would violate the Official Secrets Act. “I have written my findings to the DG himself and DG-IGP with a copy to the Home Secretary and ACB. Let the government look into my report and hold an enquiry to find out who is right and who is wrong,” Roopa said.

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