Chennai: Tamil Nadu prisons topped the nation in generating income by selling products made by its inmates in 2015. The prison department made over Rs 47.87 crore through the inmates’ products, which were mainly sold via its Freedom Bazaar stores, according a latest NCRB statistics.
The TN prisons also had the distinction of housing as many as 289 prisoners with technical degrees / diplomas, highest among all States. Of the nearly 5,000 convicts in TN, 38.5 per cent belonged to SC/ST categories.
In 2014, the Tamil Nadu prisons reported Rs 36.97 crore in gross earnings, also highest in the country. According to a TN jail official, supportive government policies, committed inmates and officials made it happen.
Tamil Nadu prison officials had been pushing the products including clothing, bakery items, paintings, leather goods and handcrafts made by the jail inmate through Freedom Bazaar stores in Chennai. They were also trying to market the products in high end IT parks as well.
Tamil Nadu prisons, with a total of 14,122 inmates, had on an average made products worth Rs 33,901 per inmate during 2015. Inmates in Delhi prisons manufactured products worth Rs 31 crore during 2015 and secured second spot and prisoners in Kerala jails had made Rs 22.9 crore worth items to bag the third place.
Of 4,966 convicts lodged in the TN prisons, 289 had technical degrees or diplomas while 1,212 were illiterate. As many as 434 were graduates and 175 were post graduates. In UP, 1,553 prisoners were graduates and 566 were PG holders.
Of the 4,966 convicted inmates, 1,750 belonged to scheduled castes and 158 to scheduled tribes. Together the SC and ST made 38.5 per cent of the total convicted inmates while 51 per cent people belonged to OBC....