The Madhya Pradesh government has decided not to handout cash rewards to the police officers who were involved in the operation in which eight undertrials of Bhopal Central Jail were killed after they escaped from the prison. A government official told PTI, "After the announcement of the judicial probe into the incident, the government cannot give cash rewards to anyone till the completion of the inquiry."

Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on November 1 had announced a reward of Rs 2 lakh each for those policemen involved in the shootout. However, human rights activists had been demanding withholding the cash reward ever since it was announced. "It [the reward] can't be justified till the probe is complete and all questions raised on the issue are properly addressed," social activist Abdul Jabbar had told PTI.

Apart from the judicial inquiry into the alleged encounter, the National Investigation Agency has been asked to look into how the men had escaped from the jail, while former director general of police Nandan Dubey will be lead an inquiry into the security lapses on the part of prison authorities. Besides, the chief minister had ordered an audit of prisons after visiting the central jail on Wednesday.

The authenticity of the encounter was questioned after two audio tapes and video clippings from the shootout site contradicted the claims made by the police. Earlier, Madhya Pradesh Anti-Terrorist Squad Chief Sanjeev Shami had said that the undertrials were unarmed when they were shot dead by men from his team.

The police have maintained that the eight Students Islamic Movement of India members had escaped from Bhopal Central Jail on October 30 after murdering a security guard. They were intercepted on the outskirts of the city, and were eventually shot dead after they engaged the police in a gun battle.