Probe hints at police link in Siraha jailbreak

Siraha, August 19:

The team formed by the government to probe the jailbreak in Siraha last week said the escape was pre-planned and security men and jail administration officials might have had a hand in the jailbreak.

The team formed by the Home Ministry, and assigned to submit its report within a week, began its work today.

Team coordinator and chief of the Department of Prison Management Anil Kumar Pandey said preliminary interrogation showed that security personnel and jail administration officials were involved in the incident.

Talking to journalists, Pandey said, “Existing flaws in the jail management should be corrected

and jail staffers across the nation should be more professional.”

Assistant health worker Bindeshwor Yadav has been working as acting jailer since February after jailer Tekraj Chapagain retired. The acting jailor and and the security personnel deployed in the jail had been allowing meetings between the prisoners and their relatives without following any rule and regulation, the probe team members said.

During the investigation, the team will record statements of jail staffers, eyewitnesses, locals, prisoners and the security personnel deployed in the jail.

Out of 54 prisoners, who fled from the jail, police have already arrested five. One Sone Lal Yadav of Bishrampur was killed in a police firing during the escape. However, eyewitnesses said police had beaten Yadav to death after arresting him. According to the post-mortem report, his body had no bullet injury.

Eighteen security personnel posted in the jail have already been interrogated, the Siraha District Police Office said. DIG Krishna Prasad Shrestha and SSP Raj Kumar Rajbhandari are the members of the team.