DESIGN AND IMPLEMENTATION OF AN ONLINE PRISON MANAGEMENT SYSTEM
1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Management of prisons in Nigeria has long been a neglected area which has recently been incorporated in the e-governance program of Government of Nigeria. Currently a rudimentary process of storing all the prisoner data in manual files and registers is in place. The Prison Management System project will integrate all the prisoner data into a single integrated system which will in turn result all the information being present in a digital format.
ICT in prisons was initiated in the year 2002 at Delhi Prisons, Tihar. The Tihar Prisons Complex in New Delhi is the biggest prison complex in Asia comprising of 9 prisons and one District Jail at Rohini with a total strength of more than 11,000 prisoners against a normal sanctioned capacity of 6250 prisoners. In a year about 70,000 – 80,000 inmates remain lodged in these prisons for different duration and crimes committed by them. This prison population has about 80% under trials and includes about 480 women inmates. About 400 inmates are foreigners from different parts of the world. Many high security criminals also live here. There has been a substantial increase in number of prison inmates coming to Tihar because of a phenomenal increase in the crime scene at Delhi that has resulted in the increase of the ICT needs and its management at the Tihar Jail Complex.
Nearly 1700-1800 visitors meet their relative inmates’ everyday. There was manual system of booking (meetings) in each jail for its respective inmates. Centralised visitor record was not available. There was lack of exchange of visitors’ information within jails
and prison headquarters. No provision for identification / detection / verification of visitors was there.
Managing the prisoner record and monitoring of prisoner / visitor was always difficult since most of the records were normally maintained manually, so the concerned authorities were required to go through all the registers to find out the details and status of the inmate as well as of the visitor.
In order to cope up with the increasing number of prisoners being lodged in, the Tihar Administration required a re-engineering and rationalization of their key business processes and functions of prisoners’ related information and their computerization in order to speed up the processing of information need of courts and various other national agencies.
As the technology evolution is taking place, there arose a need for centralization of prisoner’s data to facilitate information exchange and data sharing to the users of the prison. It shall reduce administrative overheads, speed up responsiveness to users, reduce risks involved in inmate’s custody, eliminated obsolete processes and reap cost-cutting benefits.
1.2 STATEMENT OF PROBLEM
Management of prison’s in Nigeria is still at a nascent stage and follows rudimentary processes. Most of the prisons in Nigeria have a collection of manual files and registers to store prisoner/criminal records. This is a very inefficient and cumbersome way of storing records which greatly impedes the flow of critical information as well as makes looking up of information time consuming. Also, different files and registers are
required to store the information which is relevant to a single prisoner. This hinders the profiling process of prisoners.
1.3 OBJECTIVE OF THE PROJECT
The main purpose behind the implementation of the Prison Management System (PMS) was to enhance the administrative capabilities of the jails in terms of monitoring and security of the prison while improving the efficiency and productivity of the Prisons. The main goals of the project are enunciated below:
To ensure proper monitoring of the prisons by the top officials
To ensure that the discipline and decorum of the jails is maintained by both the employees and the prisoners
To ensure that no impersonation of the prisoners happens by proper validation and authentication of the prisoner’s identity
To improve the productivity and efficiency of the prisons so as to facilitate the usage of the available work force for sensitive work while leveraging technology to reduce the mundane workload of the employees
To ensure the availability of data in digital form for preservation, analysis and reporting.
1.4 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE PROJECT
The nature of project is such that outcome of project could be quantitatively measured only for few parameters such as
Automatic detection of duplication
Immediate generation of report on categorization of prisoners on basis of their cases, period of confinement etc.
Automatic calculation of Remission to be granted to a convict prisoner for good behavior, discipline etc.
Reduction in the cost (Saving of resources) of physical production of prisoners in Courts.
1.5 SCOPE OF THE PROJECT
The basic purpose of this project is to develop an online system for prison management. The system developed covers prisoner’s information such as picture, conviction, offence, visitors, address, jail term record etc.