Rival groups clash inside Ludhiana jail, order restored with CRPF help

Jail staff had to call CRPF personnel inside jail premises to control the situation and later the clashing inmates were taken to their barracks using force.

At least three inmates were injured after two rival groups clashed inside Ludhiana Central Jail on Wednesday.

Police said that some inmates were being taken back after court hearing via video conferencing inside the jail premises when the rival groups clashed.

Sources from Ludhiana Central Jail said that when inmates were returning to their barracks after attending hearing via video conferencing, an argument ensued between members of two rival gangs and soon they started attacking each other with handcuffs and other objects. Stones were also pelted inside the jail in the presence of jail staff, said sources.

Jail staff had to call CRPF personnel inside jail premises to control the situation and later the clashing inmates were taken to their barracks using force.

CRPF is deployed at Ludhiana central for better security checks and to keep an eye on drug, mobile phone, liquor smuggling etc. inside jail.

Injured inmates were identified as Rajan, Lakhan and Ankur and they were taken to jail hospital for treatment.

Inspector Satbir Singh, SHO division number 7 police station, said that they had received a call regarding a clash inside Ludhiana jail. “The incident happened around 3 pm and by the time our team reached there, the situation was under control. Two rival gang members clashed when they were taken for court hearing via video conferencing. Some of them received minor injuries. Jail staff had controlled the situation. It all started with an argument which escalated into a physical clash. We are yet to identify the accused inmates. FIR will be registered after receiving a written complaint from jail staff.”

Sack jails minister: SAD
Meanwhile, the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) demanded dismissal of Punjab Jails Minister Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa.

Senior SAD leader and party’s candidate from Ludhiana West for Punjab polls 2022, Maheshinder Singh Grewal said the Ludhiana Central Jail had witnessed another clash Wednesday with two gangs openly fighting with each other resulting in serious injuries to many of the inmates.

“There are reports of stone pelting being done between both groups,” he said. He added that this was not the first such instance of such clashes in the Ludhiana jail.

“Earlier four inmates had been hurt in a group clash even as one under trial was killed and ten others were injured in a clash between prisoners and police personnel,” he said.

Grewal alleged that this state of affairs in jails in Punjab was a direct result of the patronage given to undesirable elements by the Jails minister.

He said it was for the first time ever that all restrictions on under trials and convicts in Punjab jails had been virtually removed.

“Mobile phones and drugs are finding their way into jails regularly. Everything is available to inmates at a price,” he said, adding that besides this, jails in Punjab were now also being used as safe havens by gangsters to plan kidnappings, extortions and even targeted killings.

The SAD leader said it was also a fact that Randhawa did not have any time for jail administration as he was busy indulging in an internal feud for the top chair.

“In the light of these facts it is only fit that the chief minister divest Randhawa of the Jails portfolio immediately besides taking urgent corrective steps to bring order in state jails”, he said.

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