Six policemen killed in Naxal attack
A Station House Officer (SHO) and five police personnel were on Friday killed in a Naxal ambush in Maoist-hit Dantewada district of Chhattisgarh. The incident took place when a police patrol party headed by SHO, Kuwakonda, Vivek Shukla was on way to Shyamgiri Hills for security of an under-construction road near Kuwakonda-Bacheli, a senior police official told PTI. The patrol team comprising around 10 police jawans was moving on motorcycles when armed rebels opened indiscriminate firing on them, resulting in the death of SHO Shukla and five other policemen on the spot, he said.
Naxal threat a major worry in the run up to Lok Sabha elections in Jharkhand
New Delhi: Jharkhand is a highly Naxal-infested state and providing security during elections in the rebel strongholds is a big headache for the state police and paramilitary forces. Almost 67 police stations in 15 districts have become Naxal hotbeds where the rebels target their opponents with ease, sources in the state administration have told IBNLive. Even political leaders find it very difficult to carry out their campaign in these areas with the Naxals routinely issuing threats and giving a call to boycott the election process.
They are known to ruthlessly enforce their diktats in the rural areas with many booths witnessing zero polling. The biggest worry for the administration is to provide security to candidates and ensure that people come out in large numbers on the voting day. While security at polling booths is usually adequate, the route that voters undertake is highly vulnerable. Polling parties, too, are soft targets.
One Maoist dies in gunbattle with Peoples’ Liberation Front of India
ROURKELA: Sundargarh police are on high alert after an alleged exchange of fire between members of Peoples’ Liberation Front of India (PLFI), a criminal outfit, and Maoists on Wednesday evening along Odisha-Jharkhand border. According to sources, two Maoist cadres were critically injured in the firing.
Later one died while the other was taken to Ispat General Hospital, Rourkela. “The incident took place about 3 km from Birmitrapur. We have sealed the border,” said SDPO (Biramitrapur) P K Routray. Police sources said Maoists opened fire on PLFI members, who had gone to Bansjor weekly market in Jharkhand. The gunbattle reportedly lasted for an hour. Bansjor police recovered the body of Mangal Topno, 40, from the spot. The critically injured was identified as Seban Lugun, 26.
Maoists plan to thwart mobile network ahead of Lok Sabha polls: IB
RAIPUR: Fearing leakage of their strategies ahead of Lok Sabha polls, Naxals are keeping a close watch on people who could act as informers and pass on information using mobile phones in villages of their hot-bed Bastar. In some pockets of restive Narayanpur district comprising a major part of the Abhujmad region, local cadres are visiting villages and collecting information about mobile users and even asking them to deposit the gadgets with rebels assuring to return them after the Lok Sabha elections. “The strategy is being witnessed as a part of their plan ahead of the Lok Sabha polls. It could be an attempt to maintain secrecy of their evil design,” a senior Intelligence Bureau official told PTI.
“Mobile phone and telecom towers have always been a major target of Naxals in their stronghold of Bastar, but so far such a kind of move of collecting phones from villagers was never witnessed,” the official said. Naxals have taken up the task in Mad region villages — Kutulpara, Orchhameta, Kutul and several others, he said. Though these areas have less mobile towers, but at some places like in hilly areas, mobile network is there and these areas are frequently used both by villagers and security forces, he said.
Following their failure to execute deadly attempts during the recently-concluded state Assembly elections, Maoist’s top leaders believe that the lower rank cadres have failed to maintain secrecy of their operations as the information about gathering of rebels, placement of IEDs and landmines was already leaked to police, he said. As the rebels are now gearing up to create disturbance ahead of Lok Sabha polls, their top rung has asked them to keep a hawk eye on mobile users, whose numbers have increased in the recent past, and seize mobile phones from those villages where important operations will be held, he said.
63% polling booths in Ranchi hypersensitive
RANCHI: Over 63% polling booths in Ranchi have been identified as hypersensitive during a pre-poll security assessment conducted by Ranchi police. The district is a Maoist stronghold and it is feared that the rebels might hinder free and fair polls. The report prepared by Ranchi police said of 2,286 polling booths in the district 1,441 have been identified as hypersensitive, 714 as sensitive and 131 as normal. “The aim behind the study was to identify areas which are vulnerable to threat and intimidation from anti-social elements,” said Ranchi SSP Bheemsen Tuti.