By Avinash Prabhakar
New Delhi, Dec 1 (IANS): Jailed Delhi minister Satyendar Jain violated prison norms and misused his official position and authority, which enabled him to enjoy special treatment in jail, according to an inquiry report on 'VVIP treatment' to Satyendar Jain in Tihar Jail.
The inquiry report prepared by a committee comprising the Principal Secretary (Home), Principal Secretary (Law) and Secretary (Vigilance), which has been accessed by IANS, underlines that Jain frequently met his wife Poonam Jain and other family members in jail, misusing his authority as the Prisons Minister in the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) led Delhi government.
The key findings of the report said that at least five inmates, namely Rinku (POCSO accused), Afsar Ali, Manish (POCSO accused), Sonu Singh and Dilip Kumar, were pressurised by the jail administration (including the Superintendent, Warden and Munshi) to provide "special services" to Jain.
Jain, who is lodged in Tihar jail, was arrested on May 30 after the ED charged him under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) for alleged money laundering and owning assets disproportionate to his known source of income.
The committee also found collusion on the part of then DG Prison, Sandeep Goel, with Jain, and recommended department proceedings against Goel for extending VIP treatment to the jailed AAP minister.
"The inmates did not offer any service to Jain voluntarily or out of 'love and affection' as cited by suspended jail Superintendent Ajit Kumar. Instead, the inmates feared that if they refused to obey, they would be given 'Punishment Ticket' or be tortured in jail," the report said.
The findings added that in violation of prison rules, Jain frequently held court in his room with other co-accused in the same case, Vaibhav Jain and Ankush Jain, apart from Sanjay Gupta and Raman Bhuraria who are accused in other cases filed by the ED. Such meetings often happened even during restricted curfew hours.
"The massage given by Rinku was facilitated by jail authorities as special treatment to Jain. This massage was not voluntary or out of love and affection, as claimed by the then jail Superintendent, but was in the nature of leisure for enjoying lavish lifestyle in jail by Jain. This can also be termed as abuse of authority and in violation of norms of the jail," the report said.
The inquiry committee has found that Sandeep Goel met Jain in his cell for about 50 minutes on October 6 from 18.39 hrs to 19.29 hrs. This reflects that Goel was quite close to Jain and indicates the collusion of top brass, i.e., then DG (Prisons), Goel, it said.
"The then Superintendent Ajit Kumar interacted with Jain in his cell for about 15 minutes on September 12. There was benami use of jail account cards of other inmates by Jain to purchase fruits/food and other items for his personal use. These jail account cards were recharged by the Warden and other financially well-off inmates," the inquiry report mentioned.
There are repeated entry of family members of Jain into the 'Deodhi' of Jail No. 7 without any authorisation by the competent authority, the report said.