RAWALPINDI: The Punjab government has decided to give military training to 4,000 newly recruited prison security staff.
In fact, a batch of 1,000 personnel have already started receiving training from Azad Jammu and Kashmir Regiment at Mansar Camp army training centre.
Besides 1,000 jail wardens, the newly recruited 28 assistant superintendents of prison will also be trained by the military trainers.
During the training period, each personnel will get Rs 16,000 allowance per month, and the Punjab government has allocated Rs92 million in this regard.
During three month training, the prison staff members will get commando and sharp shooting training.
They will also be trained in dealing with terrorist attack.
Of the 1,000 jail wardens, 75 were selected from Rawalpindi region.
Deputy Inspector General of Punjab Prison, Rawalpindi Region, Shahid Saleem Baig told Dawn though the prisons had more inmates than their capacity, the prison security staff had been equipped with ‘Light Machine Guns (LMG), Semi Machine Guns (SMG) and bullet proof Armored Personal Carriers (APC) vans.
First batch already receiving training from Kashmir Regiment
Mr Baig said in addition to the sophisticated arms, the prison facilities were turning to sophisticated technology including high powered jammers and close circuit television cameras to keep a track of jail inmates.
The DIG prison said the surveillance cameras and jammers are more sophisticated than those used by shopping centres or by private organisations.
He said due to the jammers, none of the inmates and even the jail staff members could use the cell phones nor could anybody bring weapon from outside.
Mr Baig said in Rawalpindi region, the available capacity of the prison was 3,720 but 8,513 inmates right now.
“Even in such circumstances, our security is foolproof and prison administration is taking no chances and taking measures whatever is needed to ensure the security,” the DIG said, adding that imparting military training to the newly young recruited wardens and senior staff was part of the tightened security and need of the future.
Earlier, in 2012, a total number of 300 jail wardens from all over the Punjab jails were selected for commando training. They were sent to Artillery Center Attock for commando training in batches.
The jail wardens were trained to use light machine gun (LMG) which is a military weapon as LMGs had been provided to all of the jails in Punjab province.
The Adiala Jail has been facing terror threats from Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan who according to intelligence had been planning to attack the police establishments, including police pickets, police offices and training colleges.
Published in Dawn December 6th , 2014