Doctor's 'Soft Corner' for Pak LeT Operative May Have Helped His Escape from Srinagar Hospital

CNN-News18
Officials investigating the case say the doctor may have knowingly or unknowingly become part of Hanzula's escape plans. CCTV footage of Srinagar jail accesses by CNN-News18 shows that there was no medical emergency for which Hanzula had to be taken to hospital.

New Delhi: The whip has been cracked in Srinagar against those who allegedly helped Naveed Jatt alias Abu Hanzula escape from hospital.

An SIT has been formed, 10 people arrested and the jail superintendent of Srinagar Central Jail moved out.

The Lashkar-e-Taiba operative escaped from SMHS hospital on Tuesday after two militants attacked and fired at policemen accompanying him there. Two policemen were killed in the attack.

CNN-News18 has also learnt that role of a doctor of SMHS is also under scanner.

"It appears she (the doctor) has developed a liking for Hanzula. Since last February, she had been recommending Hanzula to be sent SMHS hospital although his medical reports were normal," a top source in Kashmir told CNN-News18.

Officials investigating the case say she may have knowingly or unknowingly become part of Hanzula's escape plan. CCTV footage of Srinagar jail accesses by CNN-News18 shows that there was no medical emergency for which Hanzula had to be taken to hospital. Jail manual mandates that a doctor should visit the jail if an inmate complaints of illness. But he was sent to the hospital on recommendations of the doctor.

"She has been relieved of her duties at SMHS and attached to the health department, pending enquiry," an official said.

Meanwhile, pictures have surfaced on social media which shows Hanzula posing with Hizbul Mujahideen's commander Saddam Padder after his escape. Earlier, a video was issued by Hizbul Mujahideen's Riyaz Naikoo, claiming that the group had planned and executed Hanzula's escape.

IG Kashmir Muneer Khan in a press conference said that five people have been arrested for Hanzula's escape. These include over ground workers and terrorists who aided his escape.

Muneer said that two of the suspects identified as Tika Khan and Hilal visited Srinagar Central Jail on at least three occasions to plan the escape. Another suspect, Shakeel, and Hilal reached the hospital and fired at police constables accompanying Hanzula. They then escaped on a motorbike with him.

While Shakeel and Tika have been arrested, Hilal is absconding.