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10-yr-old main accused in LeT men's escape
March 01, 2007 14:38 IST
A ten-year-old boy has emerged as the main accused in helping two Lashkar-e-Tayiba terrorists escape from police custody from a local court in Uttar Pradesh capital Lucknow on Tuesday.
Police said eye witnesses had seen a boy, around ten-year-old, enter the public toilet the two terrorists had used to pick pistols, which they used to scare away their armed escorts before escaping.
According to eye-witnesses, the terrorists flashed the pistol and fired in the air. They first ran to the nearby Balrampur hospital and then towards the city railway station.
"A sketch is being prepared based on the account provided by eye witnesses," said a police official.
But at the same time he admitted the sketch may not help investigators apprehend the two POTA detainees, who escaped from the court of the district judge on February 27.
Meanwhile, the sub-inspector in charge of the three-member police escort is also being questioned for his alleged role in failing to catch the two -- Maksood Ahmed and Mohammad Syed Alaib Majhain.
SI Ram Awadh Ram had not taken pistol/revolver from the Reserve Police Lines despite being provided with a authorisation slip by the Lines munshi. A pistol/revolver is always considered a better weapon in the eventuality of chases. One of the constables did fire a shot from his bolt action rifle, but missed.
Incidentally, the two were brought to the court without handcuffs and in an ambulance. Three juvenile undertrials were brought to the same court in handcuffs with at least seven cops in tow.
Meanwhile, the state police has informed Shastra Seema Bal and Border Security Force, and handed them photographs of the two Pakistani nationals.
The two Lashkar-e-Tayiba terrorists were behind the 2001 attack on a CRPF camp at Jharoda Kalan in Delhi in which one Central Reserve Police Force constable was killed.
Natives of Pakistan, the duo were POTA detenues and lodged in the central jail in Lucknow. The two LeT modules were arrested by the Special Task Force (STF) of Uttar Pradesh Police on March 26, 2002, under Ghazipur police station. An AK-47 assault rifle and a huge quantity of RDX were recovered from them.
One of the terrorists, Maksood, had been sentenced to death by a Delhi court in the CRPF camp attack. Meanwhile, the sessions court has issued non-bailable warrants against the absconding terrorists and listed the case for next hearing on March 19.
Earlier, Mohd Syed had petitioned, he will never try to escape and as such should not be handcuffed in court. However, his plea was dismissed on January 10, 2005 and the High Court had ordered the duo be brought under tight security on hearings. A reward of Rs one lakh each has been announced on the two terrorists.