Use of electronic devices by inmates in UP jails now cognisable offence

The Uttar Pradesh government has now made the use of mobile phones and other electronic devices inside jails by inmates a cognisable and non-bailable offence.

Offenders will face rigorous imprisonment of three to five years and a fine of Rs 20000-50000, if they violate the rule.

A Home Department official said that the new rule has been implemented by amending the provisions of the Prisons Act-1894 for prisoner discipline across the jails of the state.

“If any prisoner in the jails of the state is found using any type of wireless communication device inside or outside the prison premises and as a result of which a crime is committed, then on conviction, he is liable to be punished with rigorous imprisonment of three to five years and a fine from Rs 20000-50000,” the official statement said.

With this rule, mobile phones, WiFi, Bluetooth, Near Field Communication (NFC), tablet, personal computer, laptop, palmtop, internet, GPRS, e-mail, MMS, or any other device such as mobile SIM cannot be used by inmates inside or outside the jail premises in any way.

Several inmates on occasions more than one have been found to be using mobile phones from inside the jails.

The punishment for violating the rules will now prove to be a deterrent,” said a jail official.