Arthur Rd jail to help inmates fight depression and addiction
MUMBAI: Severe depression, drug addiction withdrawal, anxiety and sleep disorders — a survey of inmates at Mumbai’s Arthur Road jail found that at least 300 of them were struggling to cope with a range of mental illness issues.
Jail authorities — who conducted the survey after undertrial Shamshiddin Shaikh hanged himself inside his prison cell last year — have decided to conduct weekly psychiatric treatment sessions to help the inmates.
The survey, conducted by doctors, found more than 200 of the jail’s 3,200 inmates were suffering from severe depression, while another 100 of them were struggling with withdrawal systems after giving up years of drug abuse.
In all, at least 300 undertrials were consuming sleeping pills and anti-depressants prescribed to them by doctors at JJ Hospital, during routine check-ups.
The survey was conducted by doctors and the Divyaj foundation, an NGO working for prisoner well-being.
They examined inmates on Thursday and began psychiatric treatment sessions.
“We realised depression was a common problem, so we assigned educated and older inmates to communicate with the newer ones to calm them down if they displayed symptoms ,” said a jail official.
JAIL AUTHORITIES FOUND AT LEAST 300 INMATES SUFFERING FROM DEPRESSION, ANXIETY ISSUES AND SLEEP DISORDERS