Taloja jail to hold medical camps for its prisoners
A pre-poll gimmick of the Nationalist Congress Party that passed a resolution in the NMMC general body proposing permanent jobs for contract workers of NMMC permanent has been exposed .
Municipal commissioner Dinesh Waghmare and mayor Sudhakar Sonawane now say that it is not possible. The general body of Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation ( NMMC) had on August 8, 2014, prior to the Lok Sabha elections unanimously approved a resolution to make around 9,500 contract workers working in its various departments on a permanent basis.
The house had unanimously approved the proposal with the opposition too supporting it. NMMC had then sent the resolution to the state general administration and urban development departments for approval.
The Shiv Sena delegation led by its deputy leader Vijay Nahata and opposition leader Vijay Chougule, raised the issue on Friday. Waghmare said, “The contract workers cannot be made permanent as the Supreme Court has laid guidelines for appointment and which cannot be implemented in case of these workers.”
He said, “We have formed a committee of experts under the mayor to look into the issue of common wages for common work. It is the responsibility of the contractor to give them mini- mum wages.”
Waghmare said, “We are looking into the legal angles through which increased compensation can be given to the contractors for enabling increased payment to the workers.”
Ruling out permanent jobs for the workers, Sonawane said, “Permanent jobs cannot be given as 80% of the workers are over the age of 50 and hence do not qualify. Should we implement the policy for only 20% workers and sack the rest?”
He added that the NMMC is the only civic body that has been giving common wages for common work.
“We are looking at ways to help increase their wages and we are committed to it. No decision will be taken in a hurry,” said Sonawane.
In an effort to understand the physical condition of their inmates, the Taloja jail authorities have decided to conduct free medical camps regularly.
The jail authorities are coordinating with a private hospital in Vashi and the first camp is likely to be conducted next week.
As of now, there are around 1,800 inmates in the jail. Many of them are suffering from diseases such as high blood pressure, jaundice, diabetes, poor eye sights among others.
A week ago, 54-year-old undertrial prisoner, Suraj Batra, died in the jail hospital. Batra, a real estate agent from Kharghar, had been arrested for his alleged involvement in the murder of the Meenakshi Jaiswal, former chairperson of Maharashtra State Child Right Commission, in 2014.
Batra had been suffering from diseases such as diabetes, high blood pressure among others for the past three months and had been undergoing treatment at NMMC hospital in Vashi and JJ hospital in Mumbai.
“We will try to find out the major and minor health issues of the inmates through this camp,” said a jail official.
“It may, however, not be possible to carry equipment to the jail from the hospital. Therefore those who are suspected to have major issues will be sent to hospital later,” he added.
The jail authorities, however, said that they are not organising this camp just because an inmate died in the jail last week.
“Suraj Batra had serious health issues and he was undergoing treatment for that. He did not die because of negligence,” another official said.
The Taloja jail can accommodate a total of 2,124 inmates. Of the 1,800 inmates, around 60% of them are from the places such as Mumbai, Thane, Kalyan, Dombivli among others.
Several members of t he underworld gangs such as Chhota Rajan, Ravi Pujari and Bharat Nepali have been kept in the jail.