This is as per data recently published by the National Crime Records Bureau.


New Delhi: The number of unnatural deaths across prisons in India has been on the rise since the last two years, according to the data recently published by the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB).

The NCRB data says that there has been over 10% increase in unnatural deaths across prisons in India in 2019 compared to 2018 data. A total of 165 unnatural deaths, including suicides, have been reported from various prisons across the country.

Out of these 165 unnatural deaths in prison, 116 inmates had committed suicide inside the prison, while 20 inmates had died in accidents and 10 inmates were murdered by other prisoners inside the prison.

Suicide has been one of the largest causes of unnatural deaths inside prisons and according to NCRB data, 108 inmates across various states and Central prisons of the country had hung themselves inside the prison to take their own lives. While one inmate had poisoned himself to death in Gujarat, one prisoner in Delhi’s prison had also died due to drug overdose inside the prison.

As per the report, two prisoners each in Punjab and Haryana were murdered inside the prison by other inmates during the last year, while one each were murdered inside prisons in Delhi, Jharkhand, Maharashtra, Odisha and Rajasthan. Only one death due to firing incident was reported inside a prison in Punjab. Two inmates, one in Karnataka and the other in Nagaland, had lost their lives due to the excesses meted out to them by the prison authorities inside the prison.

The cause of death for 15 other inmates who had died due to unnatural causes have not been specifically reported in the NCRB data and it has been listed under “other causes” section.

The NCRB report also states there has been more than 20 incidents of jail breaks in 2019, where the prisoners tried to escape from the jail by causing hurt or injury to someone. West Bengal reported the highest number of jail break incidents in 2019 where 10 attempts out of the total 20 attempts were made from West Bengal alone.

At least 139 prisoners had escaped from police custody in 2019, while 329 inmates escaped from judicial custody. Gujarat reported the highest number of escapees, where a total of 172 prisoners had escaped from police and judicial custody combined.  According to the NCRB data, there has been 137 incidents of clashes inside prisons of various states. Delhi reported the highest incidents of group clashes inside prison. In 2019, 57 incidents of clashes were reported inside Delhi’s prisons. In these clashes inside prisons in Delhi, 92 people were injured.

Apart from Delhi, 25 incidents of clashes each were reported from Madhya Pradesh and Punjab. These clashes were reported from various prisons in these two states which rendered 27 people, including inmates and jail personnel, injured in Madhya Pradesh and 61 people in Punjab.