Congress walks out of Gujarat House on Sabarmati jail break bid



Gandhinagar: Congress MLAs on Thursday staged a walkout over the issue of a daring plot to break out from the Sabarmati Jail by the Ahmedabad serial bomb blast accused, who dug a 16-feet tunnel for escape.

Congress MLA from Danilimda Shailesh Parmar had on Thursday demanded the setting up of an all party committee to enquire the issue of attempted jail break bid.

The issue was raised by a 'calling attention notice' from Congress MLA from Danilimda (Ahmedabad) Shailesh Parmar and was supported by his three colleagues Balvantsinh Rajput, Jashubhai Barad and Baldevji Thakor.

However, Minister of the State for Home Rajnikant Patel in his reply brushed aside the demand by terming it merely as a 'suggestion' from the Opposition.

"The attempt was foiled by the alertness and timely action by the concerned jail staff and we have already ordered an high level committee to investigate the matter," the Minister informed the House while refusing to accept the demand to form an all party committee.

This had prompted the Congress benches to raise vociferous protests and sloganeering in the House which was followed by a walkout by all Congress MLAs including Leader of Opposition Shankarsinh Vaghela who led all his party colleagues out of the House.

In their notice, they had sought government's response on the February 10 incident when Sabarmati Jail authorities stumbled upon a tunnel dug near the Chhota Chakkar yard where 15 of the 56 serial bomb blast accused were lodged.

"We strongly suspect that the accused had clear assistance in this failed escape bid, and as this incident has created a widespread anxiety among the people, government should give all the details about what step and action it has contemplated in the case," said Parmar.

The minister, in his reply, informed the House that 14 inmates were involved in digging 16 feet deep and 26 feet long tunnel but "due to the alertness of the jail staff it was foiled before their escape."

He also claimed that the accused had no outside help and also denied that any of the accused in the murder of former Minister of the state for Home Haren Pandya were in contact with the inmates who had dug the tunnel.

The House was informed that following the escape attempt all serial bomb blast case accused have been shifted to the high security jail in the same premises.

PTI