Unique 'Bath Therapy' to De-addict Varanasi Prison Inmates of Narcotic Drugs

by Hannah Punitha on Jul 17 2008 3:41 PM

In an unique tactic to de-addict the prison inmates of narcotic drugs, authorities at the District Jail of Varanasi has ordered them to take compulsory bath at least four times a day.

Inmates are prompted and at times forced to bathe many time in a day since initial observations of the experiments demonstrated that bathing many times in a day nullifies the urge in an addict to seek refuge under drugs.

These inmates are also being given medication in jail to enable them build a strong will power and also to help them in disposing of drug addiction completely.

According to the jail authorities, the bath therapy has helped over 1,100 addicts in kicking the habit within a span of one year.

Inmates here are delighted that with the help of unusual therapy, they have developed a faith to make a new beginning once they complete their jail term.

"Earlier, our life was like hell because I used to take smack and heroin. We were ready to do anything for a kick from smack and heroin. We used to work also but if we didn't earn enough money to buy it, we used to steal. It had become necessary for us to take smack after getting up in the morning. I am here in jail for past five days. I am being given bath 2-3 times a day here and medication also. We are benefiting from it and our soreness, stomachache, restlessness and everything has reduced much by taking bath. It is very much in control now," said Jitendra Kumar, a drug-addict inmate.

According to the Jail Superintendent, particularly in District Jails, a number of under-trial and convicted prisoners come everyday and a good number among them are addicted to drugs.

"There are a few who are on the verge of dying, so first of all we keep them in the jail hospital. During treatment of those drug-addicted prisoners, we have noticed that they feel scared of water. So when we made two to four people bath in water, we noticed that they were feeling relaxed after the bath. So we started applying this therapy on the prisoners. We make the prisoners, who are drug addicted, bathe three to four times a day, which reduces their pain and stiffness in their body. It also helps in getting rid of the addiction," said R. K. Tripathi, Superintendent of the District Jail in Varanasi.

But the medical officer, who medically treats the patients in the jail, believes that there is no relation between bath therapy and getting rid of drug addiction.

"The bath diverts the blood circulation that is towards the outer body parts and skin to the internal organs and especially to brain. And when they are asked to take bath, their moods diverted from the drug addiction for some time and after that the patient quits addiction slowly. His will power becomes strong, his personality gets developed and it also helps in maintaining the blood circulation to brain and helps the patient in quitting the addiction to a great extent," said Dr. Narendra Singh, Medical Officer, District Jail, Varanasi.

Ramshees Verma, a de-addicted inmate says, "There are lots of benefits of bathing. The body gets relaxed after taking bath. Now I have slowly started liking all kinds of work. I feel the urge to eat and the weakness has gone unlike before. I have become healthy now. I don't feel like taking drugs now. We take a vow that we will not take drugs after going out from here."

With the bath therapy the inmates, who couldn't even walk properly have started doing other works and even exercise in the morning.

The jail authorities believe if this therapy is opted by other jails all across the country, the fight against drugs and other narcotic formulations can be won.