Prisons dept spends over Rs 90,000 on Champion’s upkeep

SHILLONG: The Jail department has spent a huge sum of money, mostly on food, for the upkeep of jailed GNLA leader Champion Sangma.
In response to information sought by The Shillong Times on the total expenditure incurred for Champion Sangma, the Jail department said that Rs.90,713 was spent on him after his arrest in 2012 out of which, over Rs.67,000 was spent on food alone.
The break-up of the amount is Rs.5,600 for toiletries, Rs.6,720 for miscellaneous articles, Rs.10,500 for cable network and Rs.67,893 for food.
Medical expenditure incurred on his treatment was shown to be Rs.8,291. Champion was admitted at Shillong Civil Hospital for sustaining head injury in a brawl involving under trial prisoners on June 26, 2013. He was also admitted at NEIGRIHMS on another occasion after complaining of acute pain in his abdomen.
As per the reply from the Prisons department, Champion is provided food four times a day. While tea, chapati and molasses are served at 7 am, rice, dal and mixed vegetable are provided to him at 9:30 am. Tea with bread is served to him at 1 pm, while rice, dal and mixed vegetable are provided at 4:30 pm. He is provided with meat twice a week (Wednesday and Saturday) for dinner.           However, cooked chicken is not provided to other ordinary jail inmates.
Champion is exempted from doing manual work compared to other convicts since he is a ‘high security prisoner’ and belongs to an active militant outfit (GNLA).
Champion is provided the luxury of a daily newspaper and a TV in his cell which is also shared by another under trial prisoner Suresh Sangma.
However, the Prisons department has denied that Champion is being provided with special VIP treatment.
It was on July 30, 2012, that Champion, a former Deputy Superintendent of Police, who formed the GNLA in 2009 along with former ANVC commander Sohan D Shira was arrested by police from Umkrem, in East Khasi Hills near the Indo- Bangla border.
However, there were contradicting media reports which claimed that Champion was arrested by the Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) of Bangladesh and he was pushed back by Bangladesh to India on the morning hours of July 30, 2012.

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