At least 54 prisoners flee after jailbreak in southern Nepal

Other News Materials 14 August 2008 09:27 (UTC +04:00)

At least 54 inmates escaped from a prison in south-eastern Nepal after taking two police officers hostage, media reports said Thursday. ( dpa )

The prisoners escaped from Siraha district prison, about 300 kilometres south-east of Kathmandu, Wednesday night, the Kathmandu Post newspaper reported.

The inmates took the officers hostages when they entered the cells to count prisoners, the Post quoted one of the officers, Pannalal Yadav, as saying.

The inmates set fire to parts of the cells and beat up the officers before unlocking other cells for inmates to escape.

"They beat us up and escaped after opening the main gate," Yadav told the Post.

Several of the escaped prisoners were leaders of armed groups operating in southern Nepal and were involved in armed insurgencies.

At least one prisoner was shot and killed by police as they attempted to stop the inmates from escaping while two others were captured in the neighbouring district of Dhanusha.

Police said 150 inmates, including six women, were in the prison before the jailbreak.

Police launched search operations late in the night across the region to capture the fleeing prisoners.