Maoist posters call for boycott of Bihar assembly polls
Maoist posters calling for boycott of the coming Bihar assembly polls were found pasted at several places in Bihar’s Munger district on Wednesday despite deployment of security personnel in large numbers to instill confidence in the people. “The posters have been recovered from public places and
state-owned buildings in Maoist-affected Haveli Kharagpur and Dharhara police station areas,” Superintendent of Police M.Sunil Naik said.
Around 7.74 lakh people will exercise their franchise at 795 polling stations, including 161 sensitive ones, in the Maoist-hit constituencies of Tarapur, Munger and Jamalpur in the fourth phase on November 1, he said.
Naik said parallel phone line racking machines and Google earth search were coming in handy to keep a watch on the Maoists movement in the forests and hilly areas in the district.
Munger assembly segment had recorded only 31 per cent polling in the 2005 assembly polls, official sources said.
“We have intensified campaign for increasing voter turnout this time,” official sources said.
Maoists kill CPI-M leader in West Bengal
Kolkata: Maoist guerrillas on Tuesday killed a Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) leader and injured another in West Bengal’s Purulia district, police said.
‘Sitanath Singh Sardar, CPI-M’s Dadra local committee secretary, was shot dead and Yudhisthir Mondal, vice-chairman of Balarampur Panchayat Samity, was shot at by a gang of suspected Maoists at Chawkbazar area of Balarampur block Tuesday evening,’ said Purulia Superintendent of Police Rajesh Yadav.
Yudhisthir was taken to Tata Hospital in Jamshedpur, where his condition is reported to be critical, he said.
Locals said a group of 10-12 rebels attacked the CPI-M leaders when they were sitting in front of a shop in Chawkbazar. The rebels fired at them and fled.
Yadav said: ‘An investigation has been initiated and security personnel are conducting search operations in the area.’
The Maoists are mainly active in the state’s three western districts of Purulia, Bankura and West Midnapore.
Maoists fire at bus, two rebels killed
Raipur, Oct 19 (IANS) Maoist militants Tuesday evening opened fire at a passenger bus in Chhattisgarh’s restive Bastar region while in a separate incident, two rebels were killed in a gunfight with the police, officials said.
‘Maoists fired at a bus at Awapalli in Bijapur district when it was on way to Usur from the district headquarter town of Bijapur,’ a source at the police headquarters here told IANS.
The gun shots smashed the window panes of the bus, he said.
The source added that there was no injury or casualty among the passengers, who included a few policemen.
Bijapur is over 450 km south of state capital Raipur.
In a separate incident in the same district, Maoists fought a two-hour gun battle with a joint contingent of the District Force (DF) and Special Police Officers (SPOs) in which two rebels were shot dead. Police recovered some arms and ammunition too from the site.
Maoists dominate in the interiors of Bastar region that is roughly 40,000 sq km in area and is split into five districts – Bijapur, Bastar, Dantewada, Narayanpur and Kanker.
Eurocopter unveils Indian subsidiary
NEW DELHI — Eurocopter, a unit of European aerospace giant EADS, Wednesday unveiled an Indian subsidiary that will aim for contracts in the local market worth 138 million dollars over the next five years.
Eurocopter India Pvt Ltd. said military contracts would be dealt directly by the parent company.
“We are looking only at the civilian and paramilitary markets,” subsidiary CEO Marie-Agnes Veve told a news conference.
Veve said the subsidiary hoped to grab half of India’s helicopter market, which has been growing at an annual rate of 20 percent.
“Our target is to pick up 50 percent of India’s market share with the sale of 25 helicopters each year until 2015,” she said, adding the projected sales would be worth more than 100 million euros (138 million dollars).
Eurocopter is also back in the race to sell 197 helicopters to the Indian military.
India in 2007 scrapped Eurocopter’s successful bid for the contract worth 600 million dollars following allegations it violated an Indian ban on using middlemen in defence deals.
The allegations were denied and Eurocopter re-bid for the contract after India floated fresh global tenders in 2008.
Veve said the company hoped to sell helicopters to Indian states looking for new hardware to combat Maoist guerrillas as well as to the energy, private and medical sectors.
“The Indian helicopter industry has great potential for expansion, given the country’s expanding economy, its size and challenging terrain, as well as the industrial potential,” she added.