A total of 341 prisoners yesterday morning escaped form the Dacca Central Jail by breaking open the gate, cells and by scaling the walls. Of them 16 were later recaptured from various parts of the city.

During the incident, the jail police, open fire killing or injuring a number of prisoners. A spokesman of the jail later told newsmen that seven prisoners, two convicts, five under trials- were killed and 30 others, including seven convicts, received bullet wounds. Six Jail guards and sergent were also injured in clashes with the fleeing prisoners.


Till last evening a total of 325 prisoners including 16 convicts remained at large.

Most of the prisoners who were either killed, injured or who espaped, were allegedly members of gang cases, the jail authorities said.

Of the injured, 10 were removed to Dacca Medical College Hospital with bullet wounds and were admitted. Condition of one of them was reported to be serious. Another injured prisoner who was also brought to DMCH was taken back to jail after treatment. The rest 19 were treated in the jail hospital.

The incident

Giving an account of the incident, spokesman of the Dacca Central Jail yesterday said that at about 11-15 a. m. most of the prisoners assembled for their mid-day meal. They included all the prisoners of wards 3 and 4. Incidentally, at the same time, a procession was passing through the Nazimuddin Road along the Central Jail raising slogans.

The spokesman said that attracted by slogans outside, the assembled prisoners, numbering over 2000, suddenly started rushing towards the jail gate raising slogans. On their way to the gate they took with them all available arms including "Dao" axe, hammer, Dhenki, shovel and rods and tried to break open the gate.


The Attack

Within seconds, they broke the wooden portion of the iron-gate, and the window of the DIG (Prison) office and overpowered the on-duty guards.

Soon the alarm was given and the on duty guards on the fooft and other positions opened fire. According to reports, the firing continued for about 40 minutes.

While some of the prisoners escaped through the gate, others scaled. The jail walls, running along Urdu Road and Bakshi Bazar with the help of rope and bamboo. Some others also managed to escape by breaking open another gate used for refuse carrying trucks.

The prisoners, immediately after escaping the Jail Campus changed their dress and rushed to every direction. Many of them later assembled together and brought out processions raising slogans and carrying lathis, iron-rods and other weapons. A group of the processionists went to the Shaheed Minar from where they passed some of the main thoroughfares and dispersed.

Out of the total, 341 escaped, 17 were later caught by police from various parts of the city.

There were about 3, 315 including 98 women prisoners in the Dacca Central Jail. The Jail authorities said that neither the political prisoners nor the women prisoners escaped the jail which had a total strength of 318 guards including 44 who were on duty at the time of the incident.