After Panda, Focus Shifts to Naxal Leader Nachika Linga
KORAPUT: Following the arrest of Maoist leader Sabyasachi Panda, the focus of the security forces seems to have shifted to Nachika Linga, President of Chasi Muliya Adivasi Sangh (CMAS), a naxal-backed tribal outfit in Koraput district of Odisha. Nachika, the most wanted tribal leader for Odisha Police, has been on the run evading arrest for his alleged involvement in several criminal cases, including murder, arson and dacoity since November 2009, Koraput Superintendent of Police Awinash Kumar said today.
“Nachika remains on our wanted list and we are tracking his movements. On many occasions, we have come close to nabbing him but have been unable to do so as he moves around in a crowd. We have now formed a strategy to nab him which we cannot divulge at this stage,” the SP said.
“We appeal to him to surrender and return to the mainstream. Or else, he should be ready to face police action,” Kumar said. Though Nachika has surfaced on a few occasions over the past few years and also addressed CMAS meetings, the police has been unable to arrest him. In March, the wanted tribal leader had declared he would surrender before a local court, but did not turn up, the SP said.
Jharkhand: CBI must probe ‘fake’ Naxal surrenders
The Jharkhand government has asked for a CBI inquiry into reports that a former Military Intelligence (MI) official and some CRPF officers falsely projected at least 150 Adivasi youths as members of various Left Wing Extremist (LWE) organisations in 2011-12, making them “surrender” in a bid to boost statistics. These youths were reportedly lured with the promise of jobs in the paramilitary forces. They were reportedly told that these jobs were being offered to surrendered members of LWE groups.
Some of them were even made to pay as much as Rs 2 lakh. After their “surrender” in late 2011, these youths were kept in the old Ranchi jail for up to a year, guarded by some personnel of the 203rd Battalion of the CRPF’s CoBRA. This jail was not in use since 2006, when a new jail was built on the outskirts of Ranchi. State government sources said the “scam” was the result of an ambitious project of the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) that went wrong.
The MHA had brought in former MI officer Ravi Bodra, now accused of being the “lynchpin”, after his work in Assam where he convinced some Bodo militants to surrender. “Bodra was in the Army and served in Nagaland. He later became an MI officer and was effective in getting a number of extremists to surrender in Assam. He wanted to do the same in Jharkhand and was successful for a while in Khunti district,” said Ranchi SP Anup Birthare. However, he refused to divulge which agency had given Bodra, also known as Ravi Barla, the Jharkhand mission.
Hounded by Cops, Sabyasachi Approached Andhra Cadres
Bhubaneswar/Berhampur: With his influence on the wane and the security forces getting perilously close on more than one occasions, the dreaded Sabyasachi Panda had made one last effort to patch up with the Andhra Odisha Border (AOB) Special Zonal Committee of the CPI (Maoist) late last year. He knew that it was not only the security forces which were after him, the CPI (Maoist), which had declared him a ‘renegade’ and expelled from the outfit, was also after him.
So he made a last ditch attempt to meet the Andhra leaders of the Maoist party to strike a negotiation. That did not work out though. However, the State Police is keen to know what transpired in that meeting between Sabyasachi and the Naxal leaders from AP. “When we interrogate him over next 10 days, we want information about the meeting as it will give us a peek into their operational control in southern Odisha where the Maoists continue to hold sway,” said an intelligence officer, requesting anonymity. On Saturday, Sabyasachi was whisked away to an undisclosed location after the Berhamopur Sub-Divisional Judicial Magistrate (SDJM) sent him on a 10-day police remand beginning Saturday.
Naxalite arrested with Rs 2.5 lakh
Ranchi: Police arrested a Naxalite leader, identified as Mutur Paswan alias Neeraj Rajwar with cash worth Rs 2.5 lakh from New Market Chowk at Ratu Road on Saturday. Senior superintendent of police Prabhat Kumar said a team led by DSP Deepak Ambast conducted raid to nab the Naxalite leader on the basis of a tip-off.
Hunt for Maoists on in 5 districts of Odisha
BERHAMPUR: Combing operations continue in Maoist-infested southern Odisha districts of Ganjam, Gajapati and Kandhamal districts, even after the arrest of top Maoist leader Sabyasachi Panda on Friday. The Maoist group led by Sabyasachi had been dominating the southern Odisha districts Ganjam, Gajapati, Kandhamal, Rayagada and Nayagarh ? over the last several years, while the state-grown Red leader was involved over 100 different Maoist-related cases in these districts.
“There is no doubt that a major Maoist group was destroyed in the area with the arrest of Sabyasachi. But anti-Maoist operations will continue as usual in the area to wipe out the other groups” said DIG (southern range) Amitabh Thakur. Police suspect that Maoist cadres from Andhra Pradesh and Chhattisgarh states were still active in Kandhamal-Gajapati-Rayagada and Rayagada-Kandhamal-Kalahandi border areas. The CPI (Maoist) had formed the Ghumusara-Nagabali-Vansadhara division to spread their influence in the area after Sabyasachi formed the Odisha Maobadi Party (OMP), after being expelled from the party in August 2012. He was expelled from the party for accusing party leader Ganapathi in an open letter.
“More ultras from the neighbouring states are likely to infiltrate the area to strengthen their organization in the absence of Sabyasachi, who reportedly opposed their violent activities,” said a retired senior police officer. Moreover, the militia members of the OMP were likely to be inclined towards the new group in the absence of Sabyasachi, he said.
Two die in cop firing
Patna, July 19: Two persons, including a middle-aged woman, were killed and five others were wounded when police opened fire today to disperse a mob at Madanpur block office in Maoist-hit Aurangabad district. According to the police, the demonstrators indulged in stone pelting, arson and hurling bombs. The injured persons have been admitted to Anugrah Narayan Medical College and Hospital, Gaya. However, the condition of two of them identified as Awadhesh and Uday was stated to be critical. The deceased have been identified as Kalawati Devi, 34, and Dhanraj Kumar, 17 — both residents of Madanpur.
The trouble erupted around 3.30pm when a police team reached Madanpur block office to disperse the protesters, who had laid a siege to the offices of the block development officer (BDO) and the circle officer (CO) since morning to protest the arrest of a resident for his alleged links with the Naxalites. The protesters pelted the men in uniform with stones and set a police vehicle on fire. A section of the protesters also exploded bombs on the government offices. Initially, the police pressed baton charge and lobbed teargas shells to quell the mob, which was demanding unconditional release of a resident of Chhalidohan village.
He had been taken into custody during operations on Thursday and they demanded action against the police personnel involved in thrashing him allegedly in police lock-up. The mob subsequently set the block office and the circle office on fire and chased the cops. The protesters had also disrupted traffic on the busy NH-2 by putting up blockades at different points. “The police were forced to open fire when a mob attacked them, set ablaze their vehicles and targeted the office of the Madanpur BDO and CO. The office to deal with applications under the Right to Public Service Act was also torched,” said Aurangabad superintendent of police Upendra Sharma.
Sources in Aurangabad said the mob had locked BDO Ashok Kumar Singh and CO Rajendra Pathak in their respective offices and did not allow them to move out. “The police had to open fire in self-defence,” added Sharma. Additional director-general (headquarters) Guptesh-war Pandey confirmed the death of two persons in the police firing. “Additional forces have been deployed in view of tension prevailing in the town,” Pandey said, adding that Sharma was camping at Madanpur. Additional forces from Bihar Military Police’s 2nd battalion stationed at Dehri-on-Sone in Rohtas have also rushed to the spot to assist the local administration in maintaining law and order.
“The police headquarters is keeping a close watch on the situation,” Pandey said. The protest was continuing till the time of filing the report. Aurangabad district magistrate Naveen Chandra Jha claimed that the situation was under control. “The post mortem of the two persons killed in the firing is being conducted at a government hospital in Gaya,” he added. Some local residents said the police with the help of Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) had carried out search operations in Sahajpur and Chhalidohar villages on Thursday after being tipped off about the presence of some Maoist leaders in the area. “The police had to face a hostile crowd during the operations,” a resident said on condition of anonymity.
Manas, a spokesman for the CPI (Maoist), alleged that the security personnel misbehaved with some women during search of their houses angering the residents and they assembled at the block headquarters to protest the police highhandedness. Some innocent residents were also harassed after being branded as Maoists, he said. This is the second incident of police firing in the state in the past fortnight. Earlier, two persons were killed and seven others were injured when the police opened fire to quell a violent mob at Akabarpur in Rohtas district on July 8. The incident had figured in the Assembly proceedings with Opposition condemning it and demanding action against the erring police officers.
Weapons hidden by Maoists in jungle found
The police today recovered huge quantity of arms and explosives hidden by Maoist ultras in a jungle in Rohtas district. Superintendent of Police Chandan Kumar Kushwaha said during combing operation in the jungle near Madhukupiya village under Chutia police station, policemen found weapons hidden by Maoists. The arms recovered include three rifles, one pistol, 15 ammunition, 20 detonators and about 1 kg explosive, the SP said.