PATNA: The Bihar prison department banned visitors including prisoners' relatives in 54 jails across the state on Saturday, as a precautionary measure against COVID-19.
Inspector General of the Bihar Prison, Mithilesh Mishra said that the visitors would not be allowed for a week with immediate effect. He added that the decision was taken to prevent the inmates from contracting the virus from an outside source.
There are 54 jails in Bihar including six central and one open jail with a total capacity of accommodating 40,000 Under Trials and convicted prisoners at a time.
On average, Bihar jails get 10,000 to 20,000 visitors.
Meanwhile, former chief minister and founder president of Hindustan Awami Morcha (HAM) Jitan Ram Manjhi requested chief minister Nitish Kumar to release all those who have been jailed in connection with the prohibition cases from jails, in view of the emerging threat coronavirus infection.
He lashed out at the state government for the majority of jails being overcrowded in Bihar.