There is just one pharmacist at Faridpur district jail to serve 914 inmates, as the post of an assistant surgeon for the jail remains vacant for long due to the negligence of the authorities, reports news agency UNB.

There are no physicians, no diagnostic centre or any other medical facilities inside the jail.

In 1825, Faridpur district jail was established at Jhiltuli on 34 acres of land.

A corrugated tin-shed room is available at the jail for providing medical services to the jail inmates, but it remains unfit for use.

Abdullah Al Mamun, the supervisor of Faridpur Jail, said, “The capacity of the jail is 420 inmates. However, we have 897 male and 17 female inmates now. The post of assistant surgeon has remained vacant for long.”

“If we find any prisoner sick, we have to take him or her to the Faridpur Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical College and Hospital. A physician has been appointed, but he is not regular. A senior pharmacist is available to provide medical care to them,” he said.

Besides, three attendees are required with an inmate when she or he is sent to hospitals outside the jail, hampering the normal activities of the jail due to the manpower crisis, said Al Mamun.

Pharmacist Ashraful Alam, who is available at the jail for providing first aid, said minimum two to three physicians were needed for providing healthcare services to the jail inmates.

He also stressed the need for a permanent hospital for medical care of the inmates as well as nurses and a diagnostic centre.

According to the district jail sources, some 1,050 jail inmates took healthcare services in the past three months and two inmates are undergoing treatment at Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical College and hospital and one died while undergoing treatment.

Many inmates from other jails adjacent to Faridpur district also came here to avail medical treatment.

Kabirul Islam Siddique, jail inspector of Faridpur jail, said, “The prison is crammed with inmates. The number of inmates is well over the capacity of the jail, which is a big problem.”

“It is true that the inmates are suffering a lot due to lack of healthcare services. The authorities concerned should take measures in ensuring the medical services to the prison inmates," Siddique said.

District magistrate Atul Sarkar said a physician was appointed for the treatment of the inmates. Local administration also visited the jail regularly and inquired about the facilities of the inmates.