Notorious criminal Salim alias Papya Shaikh and four other inmates fled from the sub-jail in Kopargaon in Ahmednagar district of Maharashtra by cutting the window grills of their barrack on Monday night.
The incident left the police and the district administration red-faced. Senior police officers, including Inspector General (Nashik Range) Pravin Salunke and District Superintendent of Police Raosaheb Shinde, visited the jail for investigation on Tuesday.
According to the Kopargaon police, Papya Shaikh, Sagar Shivaji Kale, Vinod Subhash Jadhav, Abasaheb Babasaheb Landge and Vikas Popat Chavan were lodged in barrack number 4. They allegedly cut six iron bars and an iron net of the window at their barrack using a hacksaw blade around 10.30 pm on Monday. None of the jail staffers on duty near their barrack could notice it as the five made good their escape taking advantage of the darkness.
The accused are suspected to have used their blankets like a rope to move out of the window and climb down the barrack wall. They reportedly received help from another notorious criminal Santosh Waykar, who was allegedly waiting with a motorcycle outside the jail.
Sources said an informer had tipped off the police about a possible jailbreak attempt but the inputs were ignored.
The police said the five had threatened to kill the family members of other inmates if they leaked any information to the police about their jailbreak plan.
Involved in 10 cases of murder, dacoity and rioting, Papya had been lodged in this sub-jail for the last one-and-a-half months.
While Sagar Kale has six cases against him, Jadhav is involved in seven cases, Landge in five and Chavan in one.
An inquiry has been ordered against the jail staffers who were on duty when the incident took place. Also, police teams were dispatched to different locations to nab the five.
Meanwhile, SP Raosaheb Shinde suspended four policemen, including head constable Salim Pathan, for allegedly failing to perform their duties properly due to which the five inmates were able to escape from the jail.
Once talks resume Siachen issue can be resolved quickly: Pak envoy
MUMBAI: In his first public interaction in India, Pakistan High Commissioner Abdul Basit Tuesday indicated that the resolution of the Siachen problem in India-Pakistan ties may be one of the first few issues to be closed once talks between the two countries resume.
During a discussion moderated by Shekhar Gupta, editor-in-chief of The Indian Express, at the Nehru Centre in Worli, Basit said, “I think we are very close to solving this issue, but for one reason or another, we have not been able to close it. I would not like to accuse any side, but this is one of the low hanging fruits and I would hope that once talks resume, this would be one of the issues that can be resolved quickly.”
In his introductory remarks, Basit said peace is in the two countries’ mutual interest, and added that sustained detailed dialogue without pre-conditions will achieve peace.
“This dialogue should not be seen as a favour by Pakistan or India to the other, and should not be anchored into any pre-conditions. At one stage, Pakistan was reluctant to enter into dialogue and wanted to resolve the Jammu-Kashmir issue first, but that did not work and nor will it work in future if we have pre-conditions. We already have existing frameworks so let us move forward… things will move quickly,” Basit said. “We can’t be cherry picking, we need to focus on all our issues and disputes.”
Significantly, choosing Mumbai for his first public address, keeping in mind the “tragic” 26/11 terrorist attacks, Basit’s interaction began with a question from a 26/11 survivor, Dilip Mehta, who demanded a timeline for bringing the sore-point in India-Pakistan relations to a conclusion.
Insisting that Pakistan faces the same level of attacks on a daily basis, Basit said, “It would be inappropriate on my part to comment as a judicial process is underway, but I will say this — whatever information we got from India, our government worked hard to put up a strong case and the accused are currently behind bars. The judiciary in Pakistan is independent and the whole case will be based on merit. These trials take time.”\
Drawing parallels with the Samjhauta Express attacks of February 2007, Basit said, “Please do not take this as an offense… 42 Pakistanis were killed, but we still do not have any verdict. Nobody has been convicted or even acquitted for that matter. So these things do take time. Please do not think that this is because the Pakistani government is procrastinating or premeditating.”