Professional - Inspector General of Prisons

Tihar shows the way
( A media report

Tihar jail in the Indian capital could become a trendsetter in the new prison management techniques in Britain and the US, prison officials here say. Indian officials will launch an extensive exchange of prison management techniques with Governors of British and American prisons, according to recent agreements. The Western interest in the experiments in Tihar, Delhi became official in London last week. Former Inspector - General of Tihar jail Kiran Bedi is being invited to the National Prison Governor conference to be held in Britain next year.  This is the first time that the Governors of the 131 British prisons have invited an outsider to their conference.  The invitation follows meetings between Bedi and officials from the international Institute for prison service and her visit to Stoke Health Prison near Birmingham last week. Experiments with new management techniques in Delhi's once notorious Tihar jail have drawn the attention of prison managers in many prisons in Britain and the US, Bedi told IANS in London. Meetings between Bedi and the Governors of British prisons will be part of a reverse programme where staff from Britain's International Institute for prisons service will carry out training programmes with prison managers in India. The British programme in India is being funded by the British council. ’The concepts we drew up in Tihar jail are now becoming management concepts,’ Bedi said. Some of the prisons techniques from Tihar like on-the-rounds practices, Vipassana meditation, internal security management and de-addiction drives are already being tried out in Western countries, Bedi said. Both British and American prisons have reported success following the Tihar model. One governor of a British prison arrived at a function in London for the launch of Bedi's book," It's Always Possible" and announced he had already introduced Vipassana meditation in the prison. The early results had been very encouraging, he said. A senior officer from the prisons service in Britain, who attended the London book launch told IANS that the experiments at Tihar jail were  ’the talking point' in reviews of management techniques. Tihar jail could in many ways become 'a trendsetter ' in jail management he said. The Tihar techniques are being tried out now in 21 prisons around the world, Bedi said. ’This has never happened before,’ she said. ’So far the exchanges in human technology,’ she said. The new agreements follow detailed discussions between Bedi and the prison managers in Britain and the US. Bedi held detailed discussions with prison managers in Kansas City in the US and with members of the criminal Justice department at a meeting organized by New York State University. She addressed several meetings on her tour which covered Atlanta, Houston, Alabama, Salt Lake City, New York, Washington D.C., in the US and London and Birmingham in Britain.(IANS).
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