Breaking the prison cycle with higher education, the inmates of Colvale jail, Goa, made productive use of their time by signing up for Bachelor of Arts (BA) and Master of Arts (MA) courses. On the occasion of the Goa Statehood Day on Monday, 21 of the 48 inmates who had enrolled in various educational courses last year were felicitated by the prisons department. The inmates completed their courses through a special study centre of Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) at the prison.
According to The Times Of India, Inspector general (IG) prisons Elvis Gomes said, that by encouraging inmates to pursue their education, the modern prison has not only covered the educational rehabilitation aspect but also helped empower the inmates. “The features of this prison prove that it is a march towards reformation,” he added.
Handing over their felicitation certificates, Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar said, “The concept of Goa’s modern jail is correctional treatment not punitive treatment. This will be a unique jail in the country which will be considered to be a reformatory home for the inmates. I am sure that administrators across the country would come to visit and study the provisions made here.” The spacious prison has emulated many of the aspects of the jails in Chennai and Hyderabad. On Monday, the women’s prison block and the industrial block of the central jail were inaugurated exactly a year after the state government inaugurated the block for males in 2015.
With an area of over 1,400sq m, the industrial block houses various workshops for carpentry, paper-making, candle-making, tailoring, etc. Besides this block, a solar panel light lamp in the campus, and biogas plant were also inaugurated. “With the help of these workshops, the inmates must be trained to inculcate skills and encouraged to earn their own living,” added the Chief Minister.
Most of these buildings have also been made accessibility-friendly for the inmates. The elderly inmates were also felicitated following which there was a release of postcards, arm badges, a book and the Goa prison newsletter.