Corrections chief mulls moving jails

Prisons along Ngam Wong Wan Road may be moved to make way for the Red Line electric railway, the Corrections Department says.

Kittiratt: Explores Red Line options

Department chief Suchart Wonganantachai said yesterday the move was being considered following a meeting on Monday between Finance Minister Kittiratt Na-Ranong and business figures.

Mr Kittiratt met property business figures in Bangkok to discuss the government's plan to develop areas along new electric rail routes.

Speaking at a seminar titled " Property _ Economic Index in 2013," Mr Kittiratt used the example of Klongprem Central Prison, saying its area could be developed by the government and private companies for facilities serving the Red Line between Bang Sue and Rangsit in Pathum Thani, which is scheduled to begin operations next year.

There are three prisons on Ngam Wong Wan Road in the Lat Yao subdistrict of Chatuchak _ Klongprem, Bangkok Remand Prison and the Women's Central Prison.

Pol Col Suchart said the finance and justice ministries must consider whether relocating the prisons would disrupt inmates' detention periods or affect court jurisdictions.

He also wanted the Treasury Department, which owns the land on which the prisons are located, to clarify where the alternative prisons could be built and how their construction would be financed.

A committee comprising officers from the ministries will be set up to give answers within 15 days, he said.

The Thaksin Shinawatra administration in 2004 backed a plan to move Bangkok and Nonthaburi prisons outside the city to develop new commercial areas.

It also sought to convert part of Bangkok Remand Prison for use as a petrol station. However, the plan was dropped when the Corrections Department cited safety concerns over having a 24-hour petrol station in front of a prison.

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Writer: King-oua Laohong
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