INDORE: Alarmed by the death of a Vyapam scam accused under suspicious conditions in the district jail a week back, the prison authorities here want to shift 17 inmates allegedly involved in the scandal to another prison.
However, the authorities cited lack of elaborate medical facilities in the jail housing around 920 prisoners as the reason for planning to shift the inmates.
"We will soon move a local court to shift 17 accused in Vyapam scam from here to another jail having a hospital that remains open for 24 hours and has adequate medical staff," district Jail Superintendent R S Bhati told PTI today.
He said the district jail has 920 prisoners, including the 17 accused in Vyapam scam, but there was only one part-time doctor, who is not generally unavailable at night. In such a situation, they have to depend only on a compounder and a male nurse to take care of the inmates.
The development assumes significance as it has come following the death of Vyapam scam accused veterinarian Narendra Singh Tomar (30) in the district jail on June 27.
Tomar was arrested on February 17 this year. He fell ill on the night of June 27. He was then rushed to a Maharaja Yashwantrao (MY) Hospital where he was declared dead, prison officials had said.
On the contrary, the deceased's family members had alleged that he was brought dead to the hospital from jail.
Tomar was posted as Assistant Veterinary Officer at Raisen before being embroiled in the Madhya Pradesh Professional Examination Board (MPPEB) scam, also known as Vyapam scam.
He was an accused in the Pre-Medical Test conducted by MPPEB in 2009. Tomar was said to have arranged for impostors who had written the papers in place of genuine aspirants.
Meanwhile, a whistle-blower of Vyapam scam, Dr Anand Rai has welcomed the idea mooted by the prison authorities to shift the 17 scam accused from the district jail to another prison.
He said the safety of these 17 accused was necessary "to reach and arrest the big fish involved in the scam."
Alleging negligence on the part of the state government in providing timely treatment to Tomar, Rai said, "There was no doctor present in the district hospital to treat Tomar. When he was brought to MY hospital, the medical facilities there were in a bad state due to the strike of junior doctors. Had Tomar got adequate medical treatment on time, his life could have been saved."
The Vyapam scam, a massive admission and recruitment racket allegedly involving several bureaucrats and politicians, is said to have claimed 45 lives.