Stepping up operations in junglemahal, the joint security forces are carrying out night searches on foot in forested areas of the region to track down Maoists.
Equipped with night vision devices, lights and mine detectors, personnel of the CRPF, part of the joint force contingent, are leaving camps at Jhargram in West Midnapore district by vehicles at night, then walking on foot into jungles at Kalaboni and Lodhasuli, police sources said today.
In remote areas with unmetalled roads, two-man teams of the joint security forces on motorcycles in groups of seven to eight are patrolling round-the-clock, the sources said.
The intensified operations had led to the capture on Friday of Maoist Nirmal Mahato from Malbona village, who had taken part in detaining the Rajdhani Express for eight hours at Banstala on October 27, 2009, the sources pointed out.
Areas in Jhargram, Nayagram and Belpahari were also being combed.
In Purulia district, the forested areas which together with West Midnapore and Bankura comprise junglemahal, round-the-clock patrols were extended to the Jaipur police station area, in addition to Jhalda, Bandwan, Bagmundi, Balarampur and Arsha.
Rabi Mandi, a Maoist cadre of the Maoists’ Ayodhya squad had surrendered to Superintendent of Police Sunil Kumar Choudhury yesterday, saying poverty had driven him to the ultra camp in 2005.
However, he expressed his wish to return to the mainstream as a package had been announced by the Chief Minister.
He was the fifth Maoist to surrender in Purulia district. Earlier, Durjyodhan Rajwar and Lalita Sahis of Balarampur had surrendered before Choudhury and Jagari Baske and Rajaram Baske before the chief minister at the state secretariat.
In Bankura district, patrols were continuing in Raipur, Sarenga, Barikul and Taldangra police station areas.