Second arrest in Maoist train sabotage ‎

A pro-Maoist activist has been arrested for his involvement in the sabotage that derailed a passenger train in West Bengal killing 148 people, police said Thursday.

Samir Mahato, a member of the militant wing of the People’s Committee Against Police Atrocities (PCAPA), was taken into custody from Jhargram in West Midnapore district Monday night, a police official said.

This is the second arrest the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) has made following the May 28 derailment of Gyaneshwari Express. The first man to be arrested was Khagen Mahato.

As the Mumbai-bound train ran off the tracks because of Maoist sabotage, a speeding freight train rammed into five derailed coaches. In all, 148 passengers were killed. Scores were injured.

‘Samir Mahato was arrested from his Kushumaghati village and brought to the CIB headquarters here,’ Deputy Inspector General Anuj Sharma told IANS.

Samir Mahato, a close aide of Khagen Mahato, was allegedly engaged by the latter to keep a vigil on the movement of security forces while other members of the militia wing cut away steel clips that keep the rail fixed to the sleeper.

‘We have a lot of evidence about Samir’s involvement,’ Sharma said.

The Jhargram additional chief judicial magistrate sent the suspect to police custody.

The arrest came hours after West Bengal Home Secretary Samar Ghosh said the police would wind up the case and hand over all findings to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), which has been engaged by the central government to probe the case.

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