Five prisoners escaped from the Central Jail in Buxar, Bihar, late on Friday, ANI reported on Saturday. The jailbreak reportedly came to light as prison officials found them missing while counting all inmates present. An alert has been issued, and the area has been cordoned off.

According to India Today, the inmates were undergoing treatment in the jail’s hospital ward, where they broke the window of the bathroom and escaped. They are believed to have feigned illness.

District Magistrate Raman Kumar said the jailbreak took place between midnight and 3 am on Saturday, PTI reported. An iron rod, pipe and dhoti were found at the spot where the prisoners scaled the jail’s wall to escape. Three wardens of the prison have been suspended.

Principal Home Secretary Aamir Subhani said he had instructed the deputy inspector general of the Buxar jail to look into the matter and report back to him. While one of the prisoners was facing a death sentence, the other four are serving a life term. They were identified as Sonu Pandey, Pradeep Singh, Upendra Sah, Deodhari Rai and Sonu Singh.

This is the third major prison break in the country in recent months. An investigation has been launched into the security lapse, and authorities are combing the surrounding areas. More details are awaited.

On October 31, eight undertrials of the Students Islamic Movement of India escaped from the Bhopal Central Jail in Madhya Pradesh. They were intercepted on the outskirts of the city and were eventually shot dead by the force. The families of the men have demanded a Central Bureau of Investigation inquiry into the shooting.

On November 27, Khalistan Liberation Force chief Harminder Singh Mintoo and four others were broken out of Nabha Central Jail in Patiala, Punjab, by 10 armed men. Mintoo was arrested by a joint force of the Punjab and Delhi police the same day. The assistant superintendent of the jail, its head warden and the owner of a local shop were also arrested in connection with the jailbreak.