Islamabad: Taliban militants had stormed a jail in Pakistan's northwest primarily to free Adnan Rashid, on death row for an attempt to assassinate former military ruler Pervez Musharraf, and who was in touch with the outside world through a mobile phone, Facebook and blogs.
Over 380 other prisoners along with Rashid had escaped from the Central Jail at Bannu in the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province yesterday.
Security officials have told the media that the Pakistani Taliban carried out the attack primarily to free Rashid, who was sentenced to death by a military court for the attempt on the life of Musharraf in 2003.
Rashid had used mobile phones inside death row cells of different jails where he was held after his conviction, the Dawn newspaper quoted its sources as saying today.
A former junior technician of the Pakistan Air Force, Rashid also contributed to several social networking sites like Facebook and to blogs from inside prison, the report said.
He was in contact with persons outside the prison, including several journalists, through his mobile phone and even sent SMSes to the reporters, the report said.
A total of 384 prisoners, including 21 who were on death row, escaped when hundreds of Taliban fighters stormed the jail in Bannu before dawn yesterday.
The attackers focused on the barrack where the death row prisoners were being held, officials said.
A resident of Chota Lahor area of Swabi district of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, Rashid is fluent in English, Pashto and Urdu.
He joined the Pakistan Air Force in 1997 and was around 24 when he was arrested in early 2004.
Story first published:
April 16, 2012 14:44 IST