Chakra Announcements

Horrific Conditions in Peruvian Prison

by Candrasekhar das, ISKCON Prison Ministry

Posted December 3, 2009

There is a prison in Peru in the high desert called Larri Ganchos. Built to accommodate 3,000 men, it now houses over 10,000. There are only a few guards; there is not enough money to hire more. They are placed in various strategic and generally safe areas outside the main prison. The actual security within is maintained by prisoners sanctioned by the administration called the Council of Inmate Leaders; yet each dorm or block or pavilion is like a pirate ship, and there are regular raids into each other's territory. There are regular attacks, some rapes and beatings.

The water is turned on briefly twice a day. Inmates come with buckets, but usually there is not enough water to go around. Some inmates become outcastes due to minor offenses such as petty theft or suspicion of gang disloyalty. They are denied access to proper indoor housing and wander a vast outdoor desert wasteland within prison confines and try to somehow live. They scavenge through an open garbage pit for discarded food. Wild dogs roam here and there. It is hard to properly describe the conditions throughout Larri Ganchos. There is a constant and vicious struggle to exist: for power, for drugs.

One inmate, Carlos, is an outcast. He has been beaten recently and his coat was stolen. Somehow he has to endure the cold nights. He is HIV-positive, has no family or friends, and wanders about. He has no real hope without Srila Prabhupada; without the care and the concern of the Vaisnavas. It is my job to introduce Krsna consciousness to Carlos and ten million other inmates like him around the world. Please help me to do that.

Other IPM programs

Also, if you have a motorcycle you would be willing to donate, I could use it to visit dozens of prisons and hundreds of inmates from my base in the Southeastern United States. It would be a tax-deductible donation within the U.S.

Finally, we have solid IPM prison programs setup in India, complete with lively kirtana, a movie presentation, a tasty prasadam feast and a lecture with discussion, but the programs have stalled due to lack of funding. We also need preachers, volunteers, Prabhupada book donations and lakshmi for postage.

Please consider the good work going on in IPM, and contact me, Candrasekhar das, at chandra16108@yahoo.com or write Bhakta David at bhaktadave@gmail.com