The escape of terrorist Naveed Jat alias Abu Hanzulla from Shri Maharaja Hari Singh Hospital of Srinagar in Kashmir was not something that happened by accident. As per the recent findings by the police, it had been planned over the last four months. The police also suspect the involvement of jail medical staff in the escape in which two policemen were martyred. Two terrorists and two overground workers have been arrested in a raid conducted by SIT in connection with firing in SMHS Hospital on 6th February, as per ANI. The CCTV footage of the camera outside the SMHS Hospital played a crucial role in bringing out the details of the escape. As per a report by The Indian Express, the ones who helped Naveed escape have been identified as – Shakeel, Tikka and Hilal – all LeT terrorists. While Shakeel and Tikka have been taken into custody by the police in a recent crackdown, Naveed and Hilal managed to escape.
“When we finally conducted raids last evening, Naveed had already left for Shopian. He had taken Hilal along. Luck favoured them because we missed them by 20 minutes. Our information is that Naveed has gone to meet Saddam Paddar in Shopian while Hilal has gone to Riyaz Naiku. They are both Hizbul Mujahideen commanders,’’ Additional Director General of Police Muneer Khan told The Indian Express on Thursday.
Reportedly, there are 14 cases against Shakeel while Tikka has at least two cases against him and a check of their call details, Khan said, revealed that both were active militants. The CCTV footage showed the sequence of events that led to the shooting and escape. “We found that Hilal had brought two pistols and he gave one to Naveed before opening fire at the policemen. Naveed’s one hand was cuffed and Babar (the police constable) was holding it. Naveed opened fire at him once he got the pistol from Hilal,’’ Khan said.
Khan also suspected Naveed’s frequent visits to the hospital had something to do with his escape. He questioned as to why was the terrorist taken to the hospital frequently despite not having any serious ailments, thereby, raising doubts over the role of jail medical staff. Asked why the militants wanted Naveed freed while scores are imprisoned, Khan said: “Lashkar wanted him free so that he could take over its leadership in the Valley. After the killing of Dujana and Ismail (Valley chiefs of Lashkar), Lashkar has been leaderless.”