In an embarrassment for the Madhya Pradesh Police,one of the six guards suspended after SIMI activists escaped from Khandwa jail has revealed he has a health condition following a spinal surgery.
D K Tiwari,who has been in police for nearly 30 years,said he could not notice the prisoners going past his watch tower as he is unable to rotate his neck since the spinal surgery last year. He told a newspaper he also suffers from constant body pain and at times his limbs go numb.
Tiwari was in charge of security and stationed under the jails watch tower between midnight and 4 am Tuesday when the six SIMI men bolted.
The director general for prisons,Surendra Singh,admitted Tiwari was supervising security but said there were other guards posted around each of the barracks.
The police,meanwhile,continued to hunt for the escaped prisoners in Khandwa near the border with Maharashtra and other towns where SIMI had a strong network in the past.
Police chief Nandan Dubey said one of the two rifles the SIMI men had seized from a night patrol was found Thursday. The other had been found Tuesday.
Three other suspected SIMI activists who were lodged in the Khandwa jail have been shifted to Bhopal and Indore in the wake of criticism that the police had kept so many key members of the banned outfit in an old jail with limited infrastructure. The authorities had claimed that most SIMI members had been jailed in Khandwa on court orders.