450 inmates are regularly attending yoga classes in Saharanpur jail.
Lucknow: About 450 prisoners lodged in Saharanpur jail have pledged to give up crime and make a career in yoga when they walk out of jail.
The inmates, since the International Yoga Day on June 21, have been attending Yoga classes by Yoga guru Bharat Bhushan.
Initially, there were about a thousand inmates who attended the yoga classes but the number has now stabilised at 450.
These 450 inmates are regularly attending yoga classes and are keen to make it a means for livelihood.
“It has been around a month and a half and the inmates are happy at the change that yoga has brought into their lives. Almost all of them admit that they are now at peace with themselves and many of them have even learnt to control their anger”, said jail superintendent Dr Viresh Raj Sharma who initiated the programme.
According to jail officials, a large number of prisoners remain worried about their life after they walk out of prison.
“They have limited choices. They know they will not get a job easily and the only option is to return to crime even if they do not want to do so. The inmates who are taking yoga classes now say that they can start yoga classes in their homes and make a living. They feel that teaching yoga will bring them the much needed respect too”, said the jail official.
The official said that apart from the inmates, a number of jail employees have also joined the Yoga classes.
“We can see a visible difference in the behavior of those who are attending Yoga classes. They are calmer and their behavior towards each other has also improved. Those suffering from high blood pressure earlier, have also shown a marked improvement”, the official said.
He further disclosed that one of the inmates whose is scheduled to be released next year when he completes his sentence, has already asked his family members to construct a hall type structure in the backyard of his house so that he can start Yoga classes when he comes out of jail.
“His sister who had come to meet him told me that she is happy to know that her brother is already looking forward to a new life. She said that the family was worried about his future but they are now relaxed,” he informed.