The Maharashtra Prison department in collaboration with the Bank of Maharashtra has started a rehabilitation program by helping the inmates by providing them business loans and personal loans to start a trade or business of their choice.
Not only skill development courses and training, but convicted and undertrial inmates released after serving imprisonment will be helped to set up a business.
On December 7, the inauguration of the rehabilitation program was done by the additional director general of police and Inspector General of Prisons Atul Kulkarni in Yerwada Central Jail in Pune in the presences of Yogesh Desai, Deputy Inspector General, South Region, Maharashtra Prison along with Rani Bhosle, Superintendent of Yerwada Jail, Vivek Dhawan, Circle manager and Vijay Kumar executive director of the bank of Maharashtra were a presence in the inauguration.
The prison authorities had announced to start the first batch of 30 inmates from the Yerwada jail. Atul Chandra Kulkarni, ADG, Prison said around 4,000 inmates from Yerwada Central jail including undertrials and convicts have already shown their willingness towards the initiative.
"The first batch is started on a trial basis. Our aim is to slowly start the initiative across all jails of Maharashtra in the coming days. The skill development courses under the Rural Self Employment Training Institute had courses including videography and photography. It has courses and trade as per the inmates choice," added Kulkarni.
Dhawan, the circle manager states after when the inmates are released and come into society, they need a business to work and stand back again. "So now onwards if they are willing to do some business, the bank, through their organization called Mahabank Rural Self Employment Training Institute (Mahabank-RSETI) will give them self employment training. Also, after they are released, they will be helped with business loans to start the trade they had training and interest in. They have to repay the loan after earning from the business. Maharashtra state will be the first to start such training and loan schemes for inmates," added Dhawan.
DIG Yogesh Desai said, "The prison authorities are mostly focused on the improvement and rehabilitation of the inmates. But we are now planning to rehabilitate the inmates after the person is released from jail and has to be accepted in society. As most of the time due to unemployment and no social acceptance, the inmates get involved in anti-social activities. But under the self-employment program, we have around 30 types of courses to be trained. Including motor mechanic training, mobile repairing, beauty parlour, papad and pickles making, poultry farming, goat farming among others," added Desai.
Vijay Kumar, the executive director of the Bank said, "Various nationalized banks are organizing such loan fair camps to help people start small businesses by providing loans and making people self-dependent," added Kumar.
Desai further added, "not only that the bank will give loans to start a business, but almost for two years, the expert from the institute will be in touch with the inmates to help him grow and learn the business and marketing strategy. It will help him keep stable and going ahead in his business," added Desai.