This Initiative Is Helping Jail Inmates Seek a Life Without Stigma

Inmates of the Yerwada jail in Pune are now manufacturing leather shoes and sandals which can be bought online.

1 min read
Social startup ‘Inmate’ helps Yerwada jail prison inmates manufacture and sell leather footwear. 

Prison inmates often have to deal with societal stigma. Many such inmates, even after having served their time, find it extremely difficult to go back to regular life.

One of the most common struggles faced by released prisoners is that of employment, with many employers being reluctant to hire someone with a past criminal record.

Mumbai-based social entrepreneur Divej Mehta wishes to change this. ‘Inmate’ is a new social startup by Mehta which sells leather footwear manufactured by the inmates of Yerwada prison in Pune.

The Quint got in touch with Divej Mehta about his initiative:

With ‘INMATE’, we aim at not just rehabilitating inmates, but look at redemption of a life and in many ways provide a better life. We want people to buy our products not just for the quality but to feel proud of their purchase. At the same time, we try to do our bit for the betterment of the leather industry in India.
Divej Mehta

Started in 2013, as a corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiative of Mehta’s Tergus Works Pvt. Ltd. , ‘Inmate’ now employs over 65 inmates of the Yerwada prison, who produce leather footwear which is sold online.

After ANI tweeted a glimpse of their interview with Divej, users took to the platform applauding Mehta’s noble venture.

You can buy these shoes on the comapany’s website at

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