The Regional Institute of Correctional Administration Dum Dum which was inaugurated on 27th August 2010 is among only three of its kind in India. Since its inception, RICA is running full steam ahead with its mission to train the correctional staff of West Bengal, Bihar, Jharkhand, Orissa and the North East States. RICA imparts training to the correctional officers not only in traditional subjects like criminology, sociology, penology, Law etc but also teaches them modern techniques of Management, Psychology, Counseling with a view to make the incarceration period of the inmates fruitful so that they ,on their release can reintegrate in the society and live a respectful self sufficient life. Modern day correctional officers are not only law enforcing agents but also act as a catalyst to social rehabilitation the fact which has been now established beyond doubt. The correctional officers act as last line of defence between the civil society and the social outcasts whom society has to reclaim. So there should be an all-out effort to transform these social outcasts and change them into better person so that they can live respectfully and meaningfully contribute in the society. As the correctional staff is at the cutting edge of the criminal justice system, no stones should be left unturned to train them or arm them with every possible knowledge so that they may successfully carry their work of transforming prisoners.
The courses in RICA are designed keeping in mind the expectations of the society from correctional officers especially with regards to reformation and rehabilitation of outlaws. Fyodor Dostoevsky once wrote “The degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its prisons” and indeed no prison can change unless the correctional staff themselves change. RICA strives to act as a catalyst in bringing about a positive change in the correctional staff. In the domain of criminal justice system, RICA has been persevering to usher in a new era by achieving the metamorphosis of correctional staff.
I am sure this new RICA website will be of immense help not only to research scholars, students correctional staff etc. but also provide various interesting inputs regarding correctional services to a common person .
(Vageesh Mishra,IPS (retd))