Bhagwant Mann announces some measures to eradicate ‘VIP culture’ from prisons in Punjab
Punjab chief minister Bhagwant Mann on Saturday announced some measures, which, he said, will be taken to eradicate ‘VIP culture’ from prisons in the state. “With a view to finish VIP culture, all VIP rooms in jails will be converted into management blocks for prison staff. Concerned officers will be held accountable for any negligence, and strict action will be taken,” Mann said in a video message on his Twitter handle. The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader also said more than 700 mobile phones had been seized from imprisoned gangsters. “We have recovered 710 mobile phones of gangsters from jail premises. We also acted against those who brought phones inside jails. A special investigation team will probe these cases. FIRs have been registered and some officers suspended,” he announced. In March, days after the AAP came to power in Punjab, jail minister Harjot Singh Bains made a surprise visit to a central jail in Patiala, acting on a ‘tip-off’ that the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) leader Bikram Singh Majithia was using a cell phone despite being behind bars. “I categorically told officials not to give any VIP treatment to any inmate. CM Bhagwant Mann has given me clear instructions take stern action against officials found indulged in any wrongdoing. Whosoever is found inefficient or breaking rules will face the music, be it even ministers or MLAs,” Bains had said to the media after his ‘surprise check’.
Punjab is AAP’s second provincial government, the first being Delhi, where the party’s national convenor, Arvind Kejriwal, is the chief minister. Also, this is for the first time that an AAP government has the state police reporting to it. As Delhi is a Union territory, the police there report to the Union home ministry.
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