Prisoners to make a new beginning as journalists in Bhopal

November 14th, 2007 - 8:27 am ICT by admin  
The inmates, serving various jail terms at the Central Bhopal Jail, have completed their three-month certificate course in journalism conducted by Express Media Service (E.M.S.) Journalism Academy.

The course was part of a special initiative of the prison authorities to open new vistas for employment for inmates after they complete their due sentences at the prison. It was specially designed to hone up the enrolled inmates’ writing and reporting skills.

Many of these journalists-to-be wish to work for reformation in society, though the others are eager to report on a wide range of issues that includes politics and life in a jail.

“We learnt how to write articles and make reports. We can prepare reports on subjects related to prison, from the outside world, politics and all aspects affecting society. We want to use our pen to inform the world about what is right and wrong,” said Rajesh Batham, one of the prisoner, who recently acquired the certificate in journalism.

Many of these prisoners have started writing for reputed local and national newspapers. These prisoners-cum-scribes are confident about their objectives and wish to contribute to society.

“After coming out of the prison, I will make rural areas my field of work. After 60 years of independence, there is lack of infrastructure in the rural areas. I want to devote the rest of my life exposing these lacunae,” said Ajit Dubey, an inmate serving a life imprisonment term.

Puroshutan Somkunwar, Superintendent of police, Central Bhopal Prison showered praise on these prisoners but with a word of caution.

“If they err as journalists, action will be taken against them as per law and their journalism diploma will also be revoked. But, the chances of these reformed prisoners will do anything wrong. One out of the hundred such prisoners could be a black sheep and that can only be called an aberration,” said Somkunwar.

Most of these inmates are from remote areas and serving various jail terms for various crimes. It would be interesting to see whether they will use their skills to raise social concerns or enjoy a relative liberty in the system that comes naturally in journalistic life. By Ram Chand Sahu (ANI)

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