Maoists continue road blockade in Narayanpatna
BERHAMPUR: Maoists have again cut off the Naraynpatna block in Koraput district of Orissa from the outside world. Panic created by Maoists among labourers was proving to be a major stumbling block in clearing road blockades, said Koraput Collector Gadadhar Parida. Trees have been cut down to block all the three roads that connect the trouble-torn block with the outside world. Maoists have again succeeded in repeating this act after a gap of two months.
According to sources the Narayanpatna-Bandhugaon road was blocked by miscreants on Aug 14. On Aug 15 they blocked the Narayanpatna-Damanjodi road. The Narayanpatna-Laxmipur road was blocked on Sunday.
Maoists and their supporters in a similar manner had blocked all road communications to this block in June for over 12 days. On June 18 eight members of the Orissa Special Striking Force (OSSF) and the driver of their vehicle were killed in a landmine blast while they were on their way to clear road blockades near Jogipalli. Union Home Minster P.Chidambaram had also rushed to Koraput.
The road blockades had been cleared after he stressed for the need of quick clearance of road blocks to Narayanpatna to re-establish control of the administration on the area.
Speaking to The Hindu, Superintendent of Police of Koraput Deepak Kumar said security forces were ready to provide all possible security for the road clearance operation.
Even the bomb disposal squad was ready to assist in clearing road blockades. But the ‘Public Works Department’ has not been able to arrange labourers for the road clearance work. The SP said in a meeting of police and administration on Sunday on the situation in Narayanpatna, the Public Works Department had been directed to provide necessary labour force for the road clearance work.
When contacted the Koraput Collector blamed the panic of naxals for non-availability of labourers for the road clearance. “Labourers say they do not want to face wrath of Maoists by clearing the obstacles put by them,” he said.
He, however, added that the personnel of the Orissa Disaster Rapid Action Force (ODRAF) were prepared to clear the roads.
According to him, they were now well-equipped for the purpose with two large tree-pruner machines and vehicle mounted power generators.
But everything waits for availability of proper number of labour force.
Maoists abduct eight; torch vehicles
Gumla: The Maoists have abducted eight persons and set fire to six dumpers, two vehicles and four other equipment in Jharkhand’s Gumla district, the police said on Tuesday.
“ HINDALCO Bauxite Mining Company supervisor Baldev Saha, company’s two other employees, a private contractor and four labourers were on Monday kidnapped by the activists of the CPI (Maoist) in Gumla,” SP Upendra Kumar said here.
He said armed Maoists stopped their car and a pick-up van, asked them to get down before setting the vehicles on fire. They took the eight along with them.
Later, the Maoists torched six dumpers, two tractors and two earth cutter poclain machines near Kujam village and set them ablaze, he said.
A combing operation has been launched to locate and rescue the abducted persons, he added.