Poverty and crime linked, shows Tihar data

New Delhi: Poverty and crime are linked to each other as statistics from Asia's largest jail -- Tihar Prisons -- reveal that 92 per cent of the prisoners lodged there are from the lower income strata of society.

Of the 12,124 inmates lodged inside Tihar Prisons, the monthly income of 92 per cent inmates does not exceed Rs 8,000, according to the data for the year 2011.

"Around 75 per cent of the prison population comprises of people who earned an annual income below Rs 50,000 at the time of their arrest," Sunil Gupta, law officer and spokesperson Tihar Prisons, said.

"Around 2,414 inmates lodged there were working as agricultural labourers during their time of arrest and 536 were into farming their own land," he said.

Tihar Prisons also organised education facilities for illiterate inmates.

"We found that there existed a direct nexus between illiteracy, poverty and criminality. Aiming to curb their attempt to commit crime again when out of jail, we introduced the Padhao and Padhao programme. At least it provides them functional literacy," he said.

Gupta said that the literacy programme organised inside the prison helped the inmates as many of them even got job offers in the first ever campus placement organised there.