Patna: Initiating a unique experiment, the Bihar government has decided to set up a gymnasium and a library in all its jails to promote physical and mental health of prisoners.
"The jail department has released money for setting up a gym and a library in all the eight central jails and 31 districts prisons across Bihar," Inspector General RPT Inspector General, Prisons, Anand Kishore said.
He said setting up gym in jails is probably the first of its kind in the country. The step has been taken in view of demands coming from inmates who find it hard to maintain good health due to lack of space for morning walk or play.
There are around 25,000 prisoners at present in jails across the state.
Kishore said a sum of Rs one lakh has been sanctioned to all the central jails for the gym. Jail superintendents have been instructed to arrange physical trainer at local level to guide the undertrials in doing exercise with sophisticated machines.
The IG said besides promoting health, the idea behind the concept is to keep the inmates engaged in constructive work which would help them do away with negative thinking and approach towards life.
The officials have been instructed to complete the work of setting up gym and library by next month.
Kishore said a state-level inter-jails competition would be organised sometimes in March next year to motivate inmates towards physical exercise.
The library in the prisons would have books on religion, science and entertainment, he said.