Convicted murderer in Indian prison develops software for managing prison staff

The Staff Tracking and Accountability Management Program keeps track of 200 employees by providing staff status reports and details about exposed locations

By Leena Dhankhar
Hindustan Times

GURGAON, India  A murder convict in Gurgaon’s Bhondsi jail has developed a complex software for tracking and managing staff in a prison that houses about 50 gangsters from Haryana and the National Capital Region, including Delhi.

Rohit Pagare, who is serving a life sentence for murdering his wife, came up with Staff Tracking and Accountability Management Program (STAMP) that keeps a track of the 200 employees at the Bhondsi jail.

The software gives staff duty reports and their location history in a single click. An integrated prison map provides a status report of the staff and accurate details about exposed locations, late arrivals and early departures, etc.

Pagare, who has spent the last nine years in jail, gathered a team of inmates for assembling all the modules and motivated them to work together.

“It took four months to design and develop the software and we worked continuously for around 8-9 hours a day to complete the task and finally in February this software was put on trial in Bhondsi jail,” 36-year-old Pagare said.

“It was not easy for me as being a chartered accountant, I had very less knowledge about developing software. I took it as a challenge and wanted to do something creative being in the prison. So I learned and spent more than 12 hours initially to learn and work on the project,” he added.

Win-win situation
The need for STAMP was felt in the jail as the National Informatics Centre-based attendance system was found to be inadequate for the prison where the staff works round the clock. The NICs software did not have duty allocation system and could not report exposed locations that are a primary requirement for any prison.

Officials said the Pagare’s software has improved their efficiency by 10-15% during the six-month trial period.

“We ran the software as a pilot and found it extremely useful in augmenting security and improving staff efficiency. By the end of June 2017, we plan to implement this software in all prisons of Haryana,” superintendent of the jail Harinder Singh said.

The LAN-based software that has upgrades for internet reporting displays the beat point to the staff the moment he marks his attendance thus removing human subjectivity in location distribution.

It is equipped with features like user-configurable prison map, salary support, a search engine, graphical displays and leave management system. The software will be scaled up to include streaming from IP surveillance cameras, face detection and identification, guard patrolling systems, RFID monitoring systems etc.

Jail superintendent Singh said that Haryana prisons department has a salary budget of about Rs 120-150 crore per annum. The proven efficiency improvements at Bhondsi jail because of the software would earn a profit of Rs 16-25 crore for the prisons department every year.

Pagare’s software can also be customised for other departments.

This is not the first time Pagare, a chartered accountant, has worked on such a project. In 2015, he was a part of a team of inmates that designed a software for prisoner management that is being used by jails across Haryana.

Pagare is serving a sentence for smothering his wife to death in December 2007 in his flat in Sushant Lok-I. He kept her dead body for several hours in the house before stashing it in a suitcase and driving around the city with it in his car boot throughout the day.

The Shri Ram College of Commerce alumni then dumped the suitcase in the bushes around 100 metres from his house. Scratch marks on his hand made the police suspicious and he was arrested after two days.

Pagare has also written a 368-page novel Four Friends.

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