As the death toll mounts, a growing number of Indian prisoners are living with mental health issues, a leading medical researcher has said.
The Indian Prisoners’ Association (IPA) said on Monday that more than 700 inmates are living in a “severely deteriorated state” in the jails and prisons across the country.
“There is no cure, no treatment,” said Ajay Kumar, the IPA’s secretary general.
“What we need is a collective approach that helps these inmates and their families, and to support their rehabilitation and recovery,” he said.
As many as 40,000 inmates are in prison for various offences.
The IPA has been calling for a moratorium on the death penalty in the wake of the killing of an inmate in Punjab state.
Indian jails have seen a sharp increase in inmate suicides, and many prisons are struggling to cope with the increasing number of inmates in the wards.
More than 4,000 prisoners have died in India’s jails and prison system since 2009.
The prison administration in the western state of Uttar Pradesh is struggling to manage the rising number of prisoners.
In October last year, an inmate committed suicide, the state’s state-run daily, the Hindustan Times, reported.
“It is shocking that we are facing such a huge problem,” said Gopi Gaur, secretary general of the IPA.
“This is a major problem.
It is the worst we have seen for many years,” she said.
According to the latest figures, more than 5,000 Indian prisoners have committed suicide since 2009, and the prison system is struggling with the crisis.More: