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Instructions for using the service

In order to avoid any inconvenience that happens to the inmates and their families and to ensure the security of the prisons, a web application has been introduced to facilitate the visitors to visit the prison by reserving a time of their convenience. It was expected to reduce the overcrowding of visitors come to the prisons and save their time by allowing them to book a visiting time convenient for them, and reduce the inconvenience of staying in the prison premises. Visitors can log in to the web application and enter information about themselves and the inmate, the date and time of the visit, and then come to the prison at that time without delay.

As a part of this system, visitors are provided with video visiting facilities through video call technology. Same as above visitors can enter their and inmates’ details into the system and reserve a time and a date to visit the inmate through a video call. This service enables inmates to visit their families at such times that Physical Visitations are not possible. And also it ensures the safety of both the visitors and the prisoners.

Physical Visit (Visiting at prison in person)

The prevailing method of visiting an inmate in prison is arriving at the prison in the morning, waiting for your turn to visit the prisoner, and having to prove your identification to prison officials and visiting the inmate. The E-visit application has been introduced to avoid these difficulties faced by visitors, After logging into the E-visit system, your expected date and time of visit must be entered and then ‘physical visit’ must be selected. After entering other relevant information, you can book an early time with the facility of booking a time of visit. Thereafter, a prison officer will confirm the data you entered and approve your visit or reject the request of visit if the data is false. With the confirmation of the visit request, you will get a chance to visit the inmate directly without delay only after coming to prison on time and proving your identity.

Please mind that you are not allowed to bring mobile phones into the prison

Online Visit (Visiting by video call)

When inmates are visited through video technology, visitors do not arrive at the prison, hence prisons find it difficult to confirm the identity of visitors. To avoid this barrier, visitors must inform their identity before applying to the facility of visiting inmates online. For this reason, details of the prisoner, visitors coming to visit him and a photocopy of the National Identity Card or another identity document for certifying the identity of visitors must be registered to the system. Registration to visit an inmate must be done once only, and then you are given a Sequential Number. Thereafter, you can allocate visiting time by logging the sequential number. After a prison officer certify that, you can get a chance to visit the inmate.

Only one member from an inmate’s family is allowed to register on behalf of the inmate, and handing over the sequential number to somebody else is against regulations of the prison, if so the facility of visiting the inmate by video calls will be suspended for a short period of time. When online visiting, it is compulsory the appearance of the registered person on the video call. However, anyone together with the registered person can join the video call with the consent of the inmate.

For security reasons, the video calls will be surveilled by a prison officer in case any talk will threaten the security or any unsuitable talk will take place. If so, the video call will be disconnected and the facility of the online visit will be suspended temporarily.

Only inmates with good conduct will earn the online visit facility. If any anti-disciplinary act occurs, the online visit will be temporary suspended.

Foreign national inmates could apply for online visit through their embassy only after confirming information with the prison. It is compulsory to provide documents that could prove the identity of the visitor.

All data must be entered in English language. Entering the data with the star (*) mark is compulsory.

  • Prison Institute
    • This data is compulsory to be entered. The prison in which the inmate is held must be selected. Only prisons which provide with the facility of the online visit have been shown. These institutes have been separated into gender types: male and female.

  • Visit Type
    • This is another mandatory data, Visit type must be mentioned here. If a visitor wishes to arrive at prison and visit the inmate, it must be mentioned as a “Physical Visit”. Also, if visitors wish to visit the inmate online through a video call it must be mentioned as an “Online Visit”. If you want to go further on “Online Visit”, it is mandatory to have a Sequential Number by register for online visit at the prison. Additional information on this has been mentioned under “visit types”.

      If one of the visit types is disabled, it means the relevant prison has not provided that service or has temporary suspended the service.

  • Visitting Date
    • Visiting date is compulsory. The expected date for the visit must be selected by clicking the relevant date from the calendar dropdown. The nearest date able to be selected is the date that comes after one day from the date you enter data and the furthest day is the day that comes after 4 days from the nearest date. Sunday is not a visiting date so Sunday should not be selected.

  • Visiting Time
    • Compulsory data to be entered. The exact visiting time on the selected day should be selected. Visiting time for one visit is about 15 minutes. Visiting time can be selected from 9.00 A.M. to 12.00 P.M. and 1.30 P.M. to 4.00 P.M. If it is a disabled time, it means that, during that time, the maximum number of visiting rooms at the prison have been allocated upon existing facilities of the prison. Then, you have to allocate another convenient time for visiting.

      These times are mentioned in Sri Lankan Standard Time (UTC +5.30 - Sri Jayawardanapura Kotte)

  • Number of Additional Visitors
    • Data is compulsory. It is necessary to enter additional visitors to visit the inmate. The maximum number of visitors are three (03). This is relevant when visitors arrive at prison to see the inmate (physical visit). During an online visit, any number of visitors can join an online visit with the consent of the inmate.

  • Your Sequential Number
    • The sequential number is only essential when visiting the inmate online. In order to obtain the sequential number, you must be registered at the prison where your inmate detains. For further information, you can read under “Registration for online visit”. If you select “Online Visit” under “Visit Type”, the sequential number must be entered. The sequential number consists of English letters, strokes and numbers. (for example ABC/M/12345). The number can be obtained only after registering at the prison. Only one member from the inmate’s family can register on behalf of the inmate. After registering only once, you could apply for online visit as long as the inmate is in jail. If the inmate has been transferred to another prison with no online visit, the inmate is not entitled to that privilege.

  • Visitors’ Full Name
    • This is also mandatory data. The full name of the visitor who expects to visit the inmate must be mentioned here. (as mentioned in the National Identity Card).

  • Visitors’ Address
    • This is compulsory data. The residential address of the visitor who comes to visit the inmate must be mentioned here. This data is essential when a notice about your visit request is necessary to be informed.

  • Visitors’ Gender
    • Data is compulsory. The gender of the visitor must be mentioned here.

  • Your Relation to the Prisoner
    • This is compulsory data. The visitor who visits the inmate must mention his/her relationship to the prisoner.

      Ex: when the inmate is husband, if the wife comes to visit the inmate it must be selected “Wife”.

  • E-Mail
    • This is not compulsory data. However, it will be convenient if you have entered the data. The email address of the visitor must be mentioned here. Important notices on visiting request, prison notices, your Token Number to enter the system will be sent through email. Please make sure of the accuracy of your e mail.

  • Mobile Number
    • Data is not compulsory. However, it will be convenient if you have entered the telephone number. The telephone number of the visitor must be entered.

      Important notices regarding your visit request, Token Number given for you to access the system, prison acknowledgements will be sent through SMS.

      When entering your telephone number, space in between digits must not be kept. The telephone number must consist only numbers but not letters. If you add a telephone number with country code, plus sign (+) must be avoided. (For example, 0711234789 & 94711234789 is valid but +94711234789 is not valid).

      When entering a foreign number, the country code is compulsory and be assured of accuracy.

  • Identity Proof
    • Data is compulsory. You must select the mode of identity such as National Identity Card, Travel Passport, Driving License etc. When you visit the inmate, you must bring alone the selected identity card with you. Here, it is confirmed that you yourself made the visit.

  • Selected ID Number
    • This data is mandatory. The number of the selected identity document must be entered. Your identity will be confirmed by checking the identity card that visitor brings along to the prison. If it is difficult to confirm your identity you will be deprived of the chance of pre-booked visit.

  • Prisoner Name
    • The prisoner name is compulsory and the correct full name must be inserted.

  • Other Names to Identify
    • This data is not mandatory. If there are other names used by the inmate, they must be entered here.

  • Prisoners’ Gender
    • This is compulsory data. The gender of the prisoner must be entered.

  • Prisoner Number
    • The number given to the prisoner when admitting to the prison must be entered here. Though data is not compulsory, the prisoner number makes it easier to identify the inmate. Also, the prisoner number confirms whether the prisoner is still at the prison or has been transferred to another prison. Hence, if you know the prisoner number, you are kindly requested to enter correctly.

  • Prisoner Category
    • It is another compulsory data. You must select whether the prisoner has been convicted by the court or unconvinced or a remand prisoner.

  • Court
    • Data is not mandatory. However, it should be mentioned the court that convicted the criminal or is still hearing the case.

You must pre-register to the system before visiting inmates online. Therefore, you must go to the prison where inmate already detained and register for an online facility.

You must hand over a photocopy of the national identity card, valid drivers license, or valid passport to the prison.

To get the Sequential Number, the application given by the prison must be filed and approval must be obtained from the Superintendent of Prisons.

You must keep this number safe and prevent unauthorized access to your information. Henceforth, when you want to visit the inmate online, this sequential number must be present.

Only one member from an inmate’s family has an opportunity to register online. Prison assures the privacy of your information entered.

If you want to alter or get rid of your registration, you can alter the registration by requesting prison by giving reasons.

After successfully booking a physical or an online visit, you will be given a Token Number. It will appear in blue at the top left corner of your visit details web page, which will open after successful data entry. If you have given a correct e-mail or a mobile number while entering data, the token number will be sent to you as an e-mail or a text message.

The token number is used as a password to check your Visit Details Page which will tell your visit details as well as whether your visit request had been approved or rejected (booking status). When online visiting, you could join the video call by clicking on the video link from the Visit Details Page.

Also, this token number is used to identify your visiting request at the prison. Therefore, it is your responsibility to remember and keep the token number safe. Your token number is an eight-digit number with English capital letters and numbers. (For example-5F98EF4).

Please mind that you are not allowed to bring mobile phones into the prison. Therefore, you must remember the token number or should write it down on a peace of paper and bring it to the prison.

Error messages and notifications of the system appear in red at the top left corner of the screen, and error messages on invalid data you entered appear on top of the visit form and below the relevant data input elements. Moreover, successful messages such as “data entry successful” is displayed in green at the top left corner of the screen.

If incorrect data has been entered, the data will not be saved and we will not receive your visit request. Hence, you must pay closer attention to error messages and notifications.

Click on the “Login” button at the top right corner of the web page to access the system for information. Then, you will be redirected to the login page. Please enter your Token Number in the text box under ‘For Visitors’ and click Login. If your token number is correct and valid, you will be directed to the “Visit Details Page”.

You could access the visit details by using the token number given to you. Also, after you successfully enter a visit request, you will be redirected to the Visit Details Page.

This Visit Details Page shows the data you entered and the token number. The Booking Status is also available on that page. (Further, information on this please view the Booking Status section).

Messages sent to you also available at the bottom of the page (under My Messages and Notifications). If you have provided an e-mail address, you might have already got these messages through e-mail.

Also, by clicking on the “Edit Details” button under My Details, you can change the e-mail and telephone number you have entered.

If you wish to cancel or delete the visit request, you must click the red button called “Delete My Booking” on the top right side of the Booking Details section. Deleting a booking will remove all the data you have entered and the request you have made, you will not be able to recover that request and you will have to make a new request again.

Only when an online visit request has been made and the Prison Institute has been approved and the Booking Status is shown as “Approved” on the Booking Details Page, the video call button will be available as a camera icon at the top right side of the Booking Details section. All you have to do is click on the camera icon and wait until the prison connects to the video call. (Do not click on the “I am the Host” button)

There are five types of booking status.

Pending Approval
This message will appear soon after you made your request. This message will remain till the prison considers your message. As long as the message appears, you do not have the approval to visit the inmate through this service.
“Approved” message appears when the prison has verified and approved your visit request. When it appears on the system, you have allowed visiting the inmate.
A cancelled message is shown when the prison has considered your visit request and then rejects due to certain reasons. If so, visitors are not entitled to visit the inmate.
“Completed” status appears after the completion of the visit by you. That means you have successfully completed visiting.
“Expired” status appears when you did not visit the inmate online on the requested date or you have not come to the prison for the visitation. “Expired” means your chance of visiting is unsuccessful or expired.

You must have a computer with a web camera, microphone, and internet facility to receive a video call. The quality of online visit depends on the web camera, quality of the microphone, and speed of the internet connection. Though there is no computer, a mobile phone with the above facilities could be used for our video call service.

By using the Token Number given to you for the requested online visit, you can log into the system and get the video call. You can open the video call by clicking on the “video icon” at the top right corner on visiting information page. (This sign appears only when the prison has approved the request of your visit and booking status has appeared as approved).

Sri Lanka Information and Communication Technology Authority (ICTA) provides the video call facility and video call can be taken only using the video service provider by the ICTA.

You are entitled to get the video call only after the approval of your request by the prison.

You must connect to the video call by opening the video call at least 5 minutes earlier than your visit time on that day. Here, you are the participant and the prison is the host. (Do not click on the “I am the host” button)

Prison will connect you to the call on time and you will have approximately 15 minutes call duration. If you are not connected to the call on time or your given time will pass, your request for the video call could be cancelled.

If your video call successfully completed or your allocated time is expired, you could not get that call through that link. You must book another time and make a new visit request.