Volume I (Part I)


CHAPTER I—lntroductory

  1. The following Acts regulate the establishment and management of Jails, the confinement and treatment of persons therein, and the maintenance of discipline amongst them.
  • The Prisons Act,1894 (9 of 1894), as amended by the Prisons (West Bengal Amendment) Act,1957 (W. Act XII of 1957).
  • The Prisoners Act, 1900 (3 of 1900), as amended by the Prisoners (West Bengal Amendment) Act, 1955 (W. Act XIIl of 1955).
  • The Indian Lunacy Act, 1912 (4 of 1912).
  • The West Bengal Children Act,1959 (W. Act XXX of 1959).
  • The Factories Act, 1948 (63 of 1948).
  • The Transfer of Prisoners Act, 1950 (29 of 1950).
  • The Prisoners (Attendance in Courts) Act, 1955 (32 of 1955).

Those provisions of the Civil Procedure Code,1908 (5 of 1908), the Criminal Procedure Code,1898 (5 of 1898) and the Indian Penal Code (45 of 1860) which relate to the confinement of prisoners, the execution of sentences, appeals, lunatics and the like, must also be complied with in connection with the prison administration.

NOTE.—All the above Acts, except the codes of Civil and Criminal Procedure, and the Indian Penal Code, are printed in Volume II of this Code.


  1. The different jails in the State are classified as follows :––
    • Central Jails for the confinement of prisoners sentenced to rigorous imprisonment for periods of one year and upwards.

(i)    District Jails at the headquarters of districts for the confinement of criminal and civil prisoners.

CIassification of Jails.

Central Jails

  1. O. No. 1964-PJ. dt. 8-61929.

G.O. No. 3683.HJ. dt 16-9-37.

  1. O. No. 1261-HJ.
  2. 20-5-49.

CIassification of District Jails. G.O.

No. 6514 P

  1. 16-12-12.

iii)  S( pecial  Jails  for  the  confinement  of  such class or classes of prisoners as Governmentmay decide.

(iv) A Circle Jail is a Central Jail to which certain Jails and Subsidiary Jails fialiraeteadffor the purpose

of control of warder establishments of such jails.

NOTE.—In the subdivisions as also at the head quarters of certain districts where there are no District Jails there are Subsidiary Jails for the confinement of criminal prisoners.

  1. The undermentioned jails are hereby declared by Government to be Central Jails :
  • Presidency
  • Alipore,
  • Midnapore,
  • Dum Dum and

All the above Central Jails function as District Jails as well and, therefore, receive prisoners of all classes.

  1. District Jails will be divided into four classes according to the daily average number of prisoners under confinement during, the previous year, , :

First Class District Jails : Those which had during the previous year a daily average of 500 o


Second Class District Jails : Those which had during the

previous year a daily average of not less and not more than 499 prisoners.

Third Class DistrictJails : Those which had during the

previous year a daily average of not les and not more than 299 prisoners.

Fourth Class DistrictJails : Those which had during the previous year a daily average of not less than 150 prisoners.

  1. of I No. 217 dt. 29-9-1908.
  2. of I No. 174 dt. 2-6-1909.

The class of each District Jail will be determined every year in the month of April by the Inspector-General in accordance with the average of the preceding calendar year. Whenever the status of a District Jail is changed under this rule from a lower to a higher class, the Inspector-General will have power to sanction the entertainment of the additional staff of warders necessitated by such change, provided that the financial grant under the head “Establishment” is not there by exceeds;

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  3. Civil prisoners shall be kept separate from criminal Any part of a jail may be set apart for civil prisoners, provided that it admits of the complete isolation of civil from criminal prisoners.
  4. For every prison there shall be a Superintendent, a Medical Officer (who may also be the Superintendent), a Medical Subordinate, a Jailor and such other officers as the State Government thinks
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  12. No permanent post shall be created without the sanction of Nor is the creation of any temporary post permissible without the order of Government, except as provided in rule 28.
Extra Establishment
  1. Whenever, for any sufficient reason, the Superintendent of any jail considers it necessary to entertain any establishment in excess of the sanctioned scale, he shall submit an application to the Inspector-General in West Bengal Jail Return No. 15 giving full, sanctioned particulars of all extra establishments already sanctioned and details of the establishment on leave or otherwise not As a general rule, except at fourth class district jails, the empioyment of extra warders for guarding condemned prisoners under rule 983 or for keeping company with undertrial prisoners under rule 912 will not, unless for very strong reasons fully stated, be permitted. In no case may the extra establishment be entertained without fresh sanction after the period for which sanction was given has expired.

In case of serious illness of a prisoner requiring his immediate removal to an outside hospital for treatment, when the previous sanction of the Inspector-General cannot be obtained, the Superintendent may, subject to immediate reference to the Inspector-General, entertain in anticipation of sanction such number of extra warders as he may consider necessary.

Segregation of Civil and Criminal prisoners.

Officers of prison, Section 6, Act of IX 1894.

Sanction required to entertain establishment, temporary or permanent.

Superintendent apply for entertaining establishment in excess of the sanctioned scale.

Jail Circular No. 38 of 1898 and

No. 18 of 1907.

Rule 1355.

W.B.F. No. 5152.

G.O.No.3626- PJ. of 14-12 36.

Appointment of extra warders.

Appointment of extra staff without prior sanction to be reported.

Rule 18.

Inspector- General of Prisons, Section 5,

Act IX, 1894. 

Control and superintendence of jails by Inspector- General.

Rule 72.

Rules 44, 50.

Control of Inspector-

General over expenditure in jails.

All Jail expenses to be submitted to Inspector-

General for audit.

  1. Extra warders sanctioned for short periods not exceeding three months may be appointed by the Superintendent of the jail at which their services are needed; but if required for longer than three months, they shall be supplied by the Superintendent of the Circle Jail. The names of extra warders so supplied shall be included in the circle list and service register, and when their services are no longer required, they shall be retransferred to the Circle Jail, where they shall take their places in the warder grades, according to seniority of services (unless found in the mean time to be inefficient), and the least efficient of the warders shall be discharged. (See rule 447 regarding allotment of duty to extra warders).
  2. The appointment of extra staff under rules 912, 948, 983 and 1258 in antisipation of the Inspector-General’s sanction must invariably be reported to the Inspector-General at the time with a full explanation of the necessity for this action.


Section l––The Inspector-General
  1. An Inspector- General shall be appointed for the State of West Bengal. He shall exercise, subject to the orders of the State Government, general control and superintendent of all prisons situated within the State.
  2. The general control and superintendence of jails in this State are vested in the Inspector-General, and all Magistrates and jail officers shall obey the orders issued by him in all matters relating to the internal economy discipline, and management of jails. He shall ascertain that all rules and regulations relating to jails are strictly enforced. Any infringement on the part of Magistrate or Superintendents of jails of the rules or of the orders of the Inspector- General, if continued after attention has been called to it, shall be brought by the Inspector-General to the notice of Government.
  3. He shall exercise full control over all expenditure in jails, submitting annually to Government, through the Accountant- General, a budget of the amount of funds necessary for their maintenance, in such manner and at such time as may be
  4. All monthly and other bills for jail expenses of every description shall be submitted to and audited by him with the exception of––
  • charges for public works which are regulated by the Public Works Department ;
  • charges for registers and forms supplied by the Forms Department ; and
  • charges for medical stores supplied by the Central Medical Stores and District Reserve Stores under the Directorate of Health Services.
  1. The Inspector-General has authority to sanction all ordinary working expenses, either for manufactory or for general purposes, within the limits of the budget grants except that in respect of purchase of grain (including pulses) for diet of prisoners or of materials for manufactures, the purchase of more than 15 months requirements (including the stock in hand) shall not be made without the authority of Government. His powers of sanction in connection with Public Works are  defined  in  Rules  1300  to   1302  and

He may also sanction any other item of expenditure for which provision has been made in the budget, to an amount not exceeding Rs. 2,500 for every such item. Subject to the provision of the Civil Accounts Code, West Bengal Financial Rules and of any special order of Government, he shall regulate the accounts of all contingent charges which may be incurred by such restrictions as may,  from  time  to  time, appear necessary for  him  to  impose.

He shall arrange for purchase of articles required by jails, except petty purchases referred to in rule 27, by calling for tenders or quotations and making contracts, whenever practicable and advantageous. Where the total value of an article to be purchased is likely to exceed Rs. 20,000, tenders shall be invited by advertisement in the Press. There shall be Advisory Committees for examining the tenders and making recommendations to the Inspector-General (see Appendix 30) but the authority for final disposal of all tenders or quotations shall vest in him. Purchases through the Central Government or from any department of the State Government may,  however,  be  made at  his  discretion.

  1. The Inspector-General is, without reference to Government, empowered to write off finally the irrecoverable value of stores or public money lost by fraud, or negligence of individuals, or for other causes, subject to the conditions that––
  • the loss in any specific case does not exceed 1,000, and
  • the loss does not disclose a defect of system, the amendment of which requires the orders of Government, and
  • that there has not been any serious negligence on the part, of some individual officer or officers which might possibly call for disciplinary

Inspector General’s power to

sanction expenditure.

G.O.No. 3575-HJ., dt. 9-9-37.

  1. O. No. 4854- PJ. of 28-12-35.

Power to I.G. to write off irrecover- able value of stores or public money. See Art. 227, C. A.

Code, and G. of B. Cir. No. 28F. of 29- 7-10. G. O. No.

5198-PJ. of 9-11-


Rule 1378(3).

Prior sanction of l.G. necessary for purchase made by any officer of Jail except in cases of Petty purchase.

Power of Inspector- General to make temporary appointment and grant rewards. G.O. No. 606 HJ.

dated 3-4 51

and No. 4854

  1. of 22-11-35.

G.O. No.1065- PJ. of 31-3-30

G.O.No.98-PJ. of 14-1-35.

G.O. No.1057- HJ. of 5-4-55.

Removal of prisoners from one Jail to another.

Rules 843, 840.

Section 7 of Act IX of 1894.

I.G.’s power to release prisoners temporarily.

G.O. No. 2138- HJ/2R-17-55 of 4-8-56.

Inspection of Jails by the Inspector- Genl. Rule 77.

G.O. No. 955- HJ. of 3-4-56.

  1. No purchase other than a petty purchase shall be made by any officer without the sanction, previously obtained, of the Inspector-General. A petty purchase shall be deemed to be any purchase when the total value of the articles to be purchased does not exceed Rs. 250 in case of food supplies and Rs. 50 in all other
  2. The Inspector-General has authority to sanction in case of necessity, and subject to budget provision, temporary appointments, on pay not exceeding 125 a month for periods not exceeding one year. This does not however authorise him to create temporary posts in his own office or to create temporary posts on a pay higher than the minimum of the scales of pay fixed for similar permanent posts.

He is also empowered, subject to budget provision, to grant rewards up to an amount not exceeding Rs. 500 in each case to an officer of the Jail Department for special work of an occasional character when the work is, in the opinion of the Inspector-General, either so laborious or of such special merit as to justify a special reward.

NOTE.––He may also authorise, by general or special orders, Superintendents of jails and subjails to employ temporary female warders to escort or keep company of convicted or undertrial female prisoners on pay not exceeding Rs. 80 per month for periods not exceeding one month at a time, provided that necessary provision has been made in the budget.

  1. Under section 29(2) of the Prisoners Act, 1900 (3 of 1900), the Inspector-General has been vested with the powers of ordering the transfer of any prisoner from any jail in West Bengal to any other jail within the State. He is also authorised to sanction the removal of prisoners from the permanent buildings of any jail into temporary quarters during All such removal should be reported to Government immediately.

30A. Under sub-section (1) of section 31A of the Prisoners Act, 1900 (3 of 1900), the Inspector-General has been vested with the powers of releasing prisoners temporarily under that section.

  1. He shall inspect every Central and district Jail at least once a year, and oftener, if During each inspection he shall see the yards, wards cells and other enclosures; he shall see every prisoner in the jail at the time of his inspection, and give every prisoner an opportunity of making any application or complaint he may wish to make and shall enquire into and determine all such as relate to jail discipline. He shall also satisfy himself that all accounts, registers, and records are maintained according to the rules in force, and that proper arrangements are made for the safe custody of all records. He shall also inspect each year some of the sudsidiary jails.
  1. After the inspection of each jail he shall record in the Visitors’ Book of the jail or in a separate memorandum his opinion about the state in which he found the jail, the manner in which it is administered, and make any suggestions or orders to the Superintendent he may deem necerssary. If the jail is in an unsatisfactory state a copy of his memorandum, with any explanation the Superintendent and the District Magistrate (if the jail is not a Central Jail) may have to give, shall be submitted for the information and orders of
  2. He shall submit to the Government annually, as soon after the commencement of the official year as possible, and not later than the 30th April, a detailed report of the jail administration for the previous calendar year, giving statistics of the prisoners in such forms as may be prescribed by the Government, together with any necessary comments thereon and his remarks on every point of jail management. In his annual report the Inspector-General shall briefly state what inspections he made in the course of the year, and what was the general result of such inspections.


  1. He shall be an ex-officio visitor of all mental hospitals under the Government of West
  2. Section 30(1) of the Indian Lunacy Act, 1912 (IV of 1912), provides that the Inspector-General shall at least once in six months inspect and submit a report upon every person confined in a jail under the provisions of section 466 or section 471 of the Criminal Procedure Code; and sections 473 and 474 of the Criminal Procedure Code empower the Inspector-General to grant certificates in certain cases. Under section 471(2) of the Criminal Procedure Code and section 30(2) of the Indian Lunacy Act,1912, the State Government can empower the Superintendent of the jail to perform any or all of these This authority has been so conveyed.
  3. The Inspector-General shall be the medium of communication between Government and every officer of the Department, and, except in cases specially excepted, every communication from any officer of the Department, intended for the perusal of Government, shall be submitted through him.

Telegraphic address of the Inspector- General.

Ex-officio Dy.- Inspector-General.

G.O. No. 1270- HJ of 12-7-51.

Functions of the ex-officio

Dy. lnspector General.

Duties of the

  1. A. to l.G.

The depot at kolkata to be

under the charge of the


Jail Depot Accounts.

Duties of the Travelling Auditor. G.

  1. No. 1540-HJ, dt. 15-6-54.
  2. may assign other duties to the Travelling, Auditor.

G.O. No.1540- HJ of 15-6-54.

  1. The telegraphic address of  the  Inspector-General is “Prisons, West Bengal”  to which  must be  added the name of the place or station.
Section Il––The Deputy Inspector-General
  1. Of the Superintendents of the Presidency Jail, the Alipore Central Jail and the Dum Dum Central Jail, whoever may for the time being be the seniormost Officer, shall be the ex-officio Deputy Inspector-General.
  2. In the absence of the Inspector-General from Kolkata he shall, in all emergent cases, carry on the routine duties of the Inspector-General excluding exercise of statutory powers vested in The Inspector-General’s office shall be under his supervision.
Section III ––The Personal Assistant to the Inspector-General
  1. The Personal Assistant shall be placed in immediate charge of the Inspector-General’s office in all its branches, and shall conduct all routine work, signing letters, bills, etc., which are in regular
Section IV––The Manager of the Jail Depot
  1. The established depot in Kolkata for the sale of articles of jail manufacture, and if necessary the supply of materials, etc., to jails, shall be under his charge, and he will be held responsible for all pecuniary transactions connected with it, and for the safe-keeping, and proper disposal of its
  2. In regard to all money transactions and to the keeping of accounts, the jail depot shall be conducted in accordance with the rules relating to jail manufacturers.
Section IVA—The Travelling Auditor

43A. For purposes of internal audit, the Prisons Directorate may have a Travelling Auditor. The duties of the Travelling Auditor will be to visit jails, sub-jails and other institutions under the administrative control of the Directorate, as often as necessary in order to verify stroes of all descriptions, cash and valuable properties of the prisoners and to audit relevant accounts and check any records, as may be necessary.

43B. Under specific orders of the Inspector-General he shall as and when necessary, undertake any duty other than statutory duty imposed upon anyone by statute, including an enquiry into matters other than administrative.