17 inmates injured in Tihar jail clash; officials claim injuries are self-inflicted

Sriparna Ghosh
Tihar jail

On Thursday night, 17 prisoners in Delhi's Tihar jail were injured in a clash between two groups. However, senior jail officers, who have denied the reports of the clash, claimed that the prisoners had asked to be let out of their cells, but when they were not granted the permission, they inflicted injuries on themselves.

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Jail authorities said that they received a call from Tihar's jail number 3 at around 1 am that there was a clash between two groups. Six prisoners, who had sustained minor injuries, were rushed to the jail hospital, while 11 others who had cuts on their ears and hands were rushed to Safdarjung Hospital. The police suspect that the prisoners had used surgical blades in the clash.

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The 11 Tihar inmates who had reportedly received injuries during the clash were discharged on Friday morning.

According to Hindustan Times, DCP (west) Vijay Kumar said: "We have just received a complaint from jail authorities. We will look into it and register a case."

Meanwhile, Director General, Prisons, Sudhir Yadav, explained the events of the previous night. He said: "There was no clash. At around 11 pm, a prisoner in Kasturi Ward called jail officers claiming he was unwell. When our officer went to open the gate and get him outside, others also joined in and demanded that they be let off. When our officer refused, they banged their heads and inflicted injuries on themselves. It is not a clash and no blades were used."

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Yadav also added that most of the prisoners in the Kasturi Ward cause trouble in the jail. Prisoners in this ward are punished under the jail rules and are not allowed to interact with others.

The 17 prisoners were serving their time for crimes such as murder and robbery. Meanwhile, the jail officers have also ordered an internal inquiry to investigate any lapses by the administration.

Besides using surgical blades, Tihar jail inmates also use blades including those from ceiling fans and wall fans to commit suicide, and even attack wardens and other inmates. Owing to this, the Mandoli jail authorities decided to install cooling ducts and remove the fans which are not only misused, but also difficult to maintain.

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