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Police personnel standing inside the gate of Bannu Central Jail which is attacked by assailants on 15 April, 2012 Sunday. – Online Photo
Police personnel standing inside the gate of Bannu Central Jail which is attacked by assailants. – Online Photo by Ijaz Mohammad

PESHAWAR: Adnan Rashid, a high profile prisoner who escaped from Bannu Central Prison on Sunday morning, was enjoying the facility of cellular phone inside the death cells of different jails where he was lodged after being sentenced to death by a field general court martial for his alleged attempt on the life of Gen (retired) Pervez Musharraf.

A former junior technician of Pakistan Air Force, Adnan Rashid is a resident of Chota Lahor area of Swabi district. He is fluent in English, Pashto and Urdu. He used to contribute to several social networking sites including Blogs and Facebook from the prison. He had joined PAF in 1997. He was around 24 when he was arrested in early 2004.

The escaped prisoner was in contact with the world outside the prison through his cellular phone, according to sources. He was also in touch with several journalists and used to send them messages through short message service (SMS).

Prior to his escape, Adnan continued to plead his innocence and claimed that his only crime was that he had voted “No” in the referendum held by the then military president Gen Musharraf.

He had pinned high hopes on the judiciary led by Chief Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry when his review petition along with that of several other convicts against their conviction was pending but after dismissal of his petition in March 2011 he started questioning the independence of judiciary.

Recently, he sent a sarcastic SMS to different persons which states: “There are millions of cases pending before high courts and Supreme Court, 99.9 per cent of these are actually appeals against verdicts of lower courts. Billions of rupees are being spent on higher civil courts so why not this judicial system is replaced by military courts; these are swift, require no judge, no special courtrooms or bars, and most interesting court martial are unchallengeable so no more need of high and supreme courts. It saves time and money of nation. What do you think? From a court martial convict.”

In the first life attempt on Gen Musharraf that took place near Jhanda Chichi Bridge at Rawalpindi on Dec 14, 2003, six personnel of PAF including Adnan Rashid were convicted by a field general court martial on Oct 3, 2005, at PAF Base Chaklala.

Besides Adnan, four others -- ex-chief technician Khalid Mehmood, ex-senior technician, Karam Din, ex-corporal Nawazish and ex-junior technician Niaz Mohammad -- were sentenced to death whereas another junior technician, Nasrullah, was sentenced to life imprisonment.

Their appeal was dismissed by a PAF appellate court in Feb 2006. Later on, their petitions were dismissed by Lahore High Court on March 28, 2006. Against that judgment they filed appeals before the Supreme Court and a three-member bench headed by Chief Justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry rejected the same on Sept 25, 2006.

The bench held that under Article 199 of the Constitution, civil courts had no jurisdiction to issue writ against orders passed by military courts. Their review petitions were also dismissed on March 31, 2011 by the apex court.

A soldier of Pakistan Army, Abdul Islam Siddiqui, who was separately tried in the same case by a court martial, had already been hanged on Aug 20, 2005.

The interviews of Adnan Rashid, when he was in prison, were also uploaded on Facebook, wherein he argued against flaws in Army Act, Pakistan Air Force Act and Navy Act and urged the Supreme Court to intervene in these cases. He had also sent several letters to Chief Justice of Pakistan requesting him to look into the flaws in their cases.

In one of his letters to the chief justice, he claimed that at the time of the said occurrence he was on duty in Quetta and was picked up by personnel of an intelligence agency on Jan 9, 2004.

When he was transferred to civil detention facility, he was initially lodged in a death cell at Haripur prison from where he was shifted to Peshawar jail. In Sept last he was shifted to Bannu prison.One of the reporters receiving regular messages from him said that in almost all the prisons he was having cellular phones. He had to change his number several times as during search operations in the prisons on several occasions he was deprived of his phone. However, after few days he was again enjoying the said facility.

Comments (14) Closed

Mr.T Apr 16, 2012 11:22am
If this guy can do fail attempt on ex-president, and still alive and on the run so we can expect another attempt pretty soon. Even CJ is saying its suspicious of bannu jail breakup. Well as a Pakistani we are now addict to bad / worst news and media doing great job for supplying syringes to the people.
shaan Apr 17, 2012 09:53am
Raika....I see your posts every now n then on dawn. Instead of finding/pin-pointing faults within pakistan and its military, please go back to your indian forums / websites. All you leave on this website are negative remarks. It's not like india is all faultless.
raika45 Apr 16, 2012 05:08pm
Reminds of the raid by the Americans for osama.Even in this case your army was caught sleeping.Do you not have a rapid response system?This was not a small operation by the enemy. It was big and well planed.Where was the response, other than your guards.
najmahasnain Apr 17, 2012 09:36pm
well said.syed.
syed Apr 17, 2012 07:17am
It is the media who is playing the worst role in our country. At the moment to me it looks like media is the biggest threat to the country. Look the media in west never goes against the interest of its own country. Our media need to learn about the freedom of press and the use of this freedom.
Zeeshan Ali Sheikh Apr 18, 2012 02:32am
Our journalist should be responsible... i Think Author destroying role of journalist... i dont y he disclosed many secrets in above Archive after the time.....
Zeeshan Ali Sheikh Apr 18, 2012 02:28am
i need email address of Mr. Waseem Ahmed Shah? can anybody provide me ....
moonjely sony Apr 16, 2012 12:34pm
so when Mr Musharraf is returning from self exile? is it a planned move by present govt to keep away Mr Musharraf from returning.
javed r siddique Apr 16, 2012 09:19pm
This means Supreme Court has no jurisdiction over Military courts.....National Assembly should take up this'
mohsinrahimoon Apr 16, 2012 08:24pm
This is also notable that the Adnan Rashid may be was supported by a group of Army in past and attack of prison is also a part of that drama, in this is ways there is lot of confusions in about it, and many questions are rising that Adnan Rashid is a common prisoner? how is possible a man who is belong to country's Specific institution, attack on country's president and after capturing he enjoy all felicities how is possible? if it is possible than how? who is actual Offender and master mind of this drama?
Moazzam Husain Apr 16, 2012 01:53pm
How the war on terror was lost. Are we now to believe that the nukes are safe?
Yawar Saeed Khan Apr 16, 2012 05:35pm
Point to note is that the SC "bench held that under Article 199 of the Constitution, civil courts had no jurisdiction to issue writ against orders passed by military courts." Who then can neutrally vett the convictions and evidences?
safi Apr 16, 2012 12:56pm
Irrespective of the fact that the man is real culprit or not! It is matter of fact that the military rule over period of decades has created its own system of justice which is neither capable nor viable at any legal parameter. At the time where our civil judicial and legal system is pathetic and is creating/encouraging criminals and extra-judicial justice. Likewise other state institution we have also ruined our legal system which need serious consideration.
Ali Mardan Apr 18, 2012 08:36pm
It is not surprising to know that prisoners were in possession of mobile phones. One can find “every kind of facilities” inside prisons in Pakistan either by bribe (if you are rich man) or intimidating prison staff (if one belongs to armed groups). In both cases one can enjoy facilities of three star hotels in prison that is very true. Like other government institutions there is no exception for Prison department in terms of corruption.