Who we are: Prison Aid + Action Research (Paar) is a non-partisan research and advocacy organization.
What we do: We study prison systems across the country and champion the cause of Open Prisons which is a more humane system for detention and imprisonment.
Our objective: Through periodic research on Open Prisons, Paar’s objective is to create a thorough repository of facts, knowledge and discourse on Open Prisons and advocate for more Open Prisons.
Our beliefs: Paar believes that Open Prisons have the potential to become a norm. We believe that Open Prisons are more suitable for reformation and rehabilitation of prisoners because of the organization’s support to reformation, rehabilitation and social reintegration as opposed to retribution as an objective of punishment.
Our motive: Paar believes in second chances and hopes to build public perception in favour of reformation. Paar works towards creating a structure of advocacy for large scale transitioning from closed prisons to an Open Prison system - a system that is built on trust and self-discipline and can inspire change.
Our vision: To make Open Prisons the norm in the coming years.
Our mission: To lay the foundation for Open Prisons to be accepted on a large scale as an alternative to closed prisons.
Our objective: To replicate the self-regulatory model of Open Prisons across the country.
Paar’s founder, Smita Chakraburtty has been working on prisons for more than a decade. She has inspected prisons across the country. Her experiences, particularly in Rajasthan, shaped the founding of Paar in 2018.
Open Prisons make the best penitentiary model available. It is a trust based model where The onus of liberty is on the prisoner, rendering the walls and the guards redundant. Minimum restraint promotes self-discipline among inmates. Prisoners live in a fully functional social environment, with a choice of paid work and often accompanied by their families. This reflects the model’s focus on reformation and re-integration instead of punishment.
Paar does research on prisons in India and advocates for Open Prisons.
'Cycle of Change'
The ‘cycle of change’ is a theory that has developed out of Ms.Smita Chakraburtty’s work and her engagement with the prison system in India.. Her report titled ‘The Open Prisons of Rajasthan’ has delved deep into analysing the rough percentage of one time offenders, the expense that the Government has to accrue on running closed and open prisons, the staff required in both the prisons. The observations and conclusions drawn from the experience of writing this report have later been developed into the ‘Cycle of Change’.
Research & Advocacy
Paar’s research work ranges from desk research on prison manuals, court judgments, government notifications to field research on the condition of prisons. We also develop material for training of judicial officers, personnel from prison and correctional services.
We will always be open to discussions and debates on issues around open prisons and what we do. Please continue the conversation.