Naxals set vehicles afire, block roads during Bastar bandh
Raipur: Naxals resorted to looting and arson besides uprooting a railway track in restive Bastar region in Chhattisgarh during the one-day ‘Dandkaranya bandh’ called by them, police said. Maoists set on fire three vehicles at Nareli Ghati between Bhansi and Bacheli areas under Bhansi police station limits in Dantewada district in early hours, police said. In another incident in Bastar district, rebels looted a walkie-talkie handset, a mobile phone and a computer terminal from the office of station master of Kaknoor railway station, senior police officials told PTI/Bhasha on condition of anonymity.
The call for bandh in Dandkaranya, a stretch of forest that runs through the states of Chattisgarh, Odisha, Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra was given in protest against government policies and Operation Green Hunt, police said. The anti-naxal operation is an “all-out offensive” believed to have been launched by government in November 2009 along five states in the “Red Corridor”. When contacted, Additional DGP (Naxal Affairs) R K Vij said, “Naxal leaders have organised the bandh as they are incensed by a spate in naxal cadres surrendering before police. The purpose of bandh is to show their relevance.”
He said barring interior areas in Bastar range, traffic is smooth in other areas. Naxals uprooted a railway track near Tudparas village in Dantewada district, affecting services on Kirandul- Vishakhapatnam route. They also blocked traffic on Sukma Road near Katekalyan village by felling a tree. In Narayanpur district, ultras felled a tree on Ravghat road blocking the stretch. Similarly traffic in Kondagaon, Orchha and Antagadh roads remained shut. Similar blockades were placed in Sukma district as well, with naxals damaging a stretch on the National Highway-30 near Rokel and Keratong villages. Flow of traffic was also blocked by felling trees and digging up roads in Kanker district of Bastar region and at many places in Bijapur district. Police teams have already been fanned out to prevent any violence and to help agencies in restoring normalcy. Meanwhile, a naxal, identified as Sondhar, was arrested from Kondagaon district in Bastar region today while his accomplices escaped after spotting police.
Maoist bandh in Malakangiri peaceful
KORAPUT: A 24-hour bandh call given by Maoists evoked mixed response in Malakangiri district on Saturday. The Dandakaranya Special Zonal Committee (DSZC) of the outlawed CPI (Maoist) had called for ‘Dandakaranya bandh’ in protest against Narendra Modi government’s alleged fascist policies and police ‘excesses’ in the region. According to official sources, government run buses remained off roads across the district, fearing Red attack. But, private buses plied on their regular routes. Shops and markets remained open. “Though Malkangiri comes under Dandakaranya region, the bandh failed to evoke any response here,” said a source at Malkangiri.
However, Maoist posters in huge numbers were spotted in interior pockets of Mathili block, which shares border with Chhattisgarh. The posters urged locals to cooperate during the bandh period. The ultras had dug Kiang-Udaigiri road under Mathili police limits at several places to restrict movement of vehicles. Police said security arrangements were enhanced in view of the bandh call and no untoward incident was reported. “As Mathili comes under operational area of the DKSZC, the guerillas damaged an interior road,” said SP (Malkangiri) Mitrabhanu Mohapatra. The extremists torched three trucks in Nerli Ghati of Dantewada district in Chhattisgarh on Friday evening. The Red rebels even open fired on police parties, who retaliated. No casualty from either side was reported.
Maoist threat stalls Purulia road project
KOLKATA/WEST MIDNAPORE: The Purulia zilla parishad is not getting contractors to construct a road across the forest hamlets in the district. No one is willing to take up the work because of Maoist threats in the area. In order to facilitate the movement of the force and provide for the people of Ayodhya Hills a better conveyance system, the administration had decided to construct a metal road through the forest. “We have decided to construct a road that will start from the top of the Ayodhya Hills and move west to a place called Paschim Khamar. This 22-km-long road will go through the forest covering nearly 100 villages on both sides. With an approximate cost of Rs 7 lakh per kilometre, the entire project is likely to entail a cost of Rs 16 crore. The project will be funded by the state government’s Paschimanchal Unnayan Parshad,” said Trinamool Congress leader and Purulia zilla sabhadhipati Shristidhar Mahato. Though the detailed project report is ready, the district administration cannot go ahead with the project due to Maoist threats.
When asked about it, IG (western range), Siddhinath Gupta, said, “There is information that Maoist activities in this area have increased and they are frequenting the hilly terrains of Purulia and even some pockets of West Midnapore.” Five police stations cover several areas, and under them, several villages, in the Ayodhya Hills. According to sources, the Maoists have a good grip over several villages in these areas. “Villages like Saramchaki, Daska, Simulbera, Ranga Dhadta, Kumra, Kuchiya Burda, Kalimati, Matha, Serengdih, Sindri Bara-Urma, Bela, Darda, Genrua, Ghatbera-Kerowa and Tentlo are Maoist strongholds and they are putting in stiff resistance. Even the villagers, who are supposed to work as labourers, are reluctant to get themselves enrolled,” a source explained.
Maoists’ bandh call disrupts normal life in Odisha’s Malkangiri district
Normal life was disrupted in some areas of Odisha’s Malkangiri disrtrict today due to a 12-hour bandh called by the Maoists in the Dandakarayana area. The bandh call was given in support of various demands by the Maoist leader of Darabha division in Dandakarayana area Binod Kabasi, who, in his 11-point charter of demands released to the media recently, had demanded shifting of BSF camps, rehabilitation of the oustees of Polavaram project and basic minimum facilities to the tribals. However, the impact of the bandh was felt only in eight bordering blocks, police said. Though there was no impact of the bandh in the district headquarters town, normal life was hit in Mathili and Padia blocks which form part of Dandakarayana, comprising Jagadalpur, Bastar, Sukma and Dantewada in Chhattisgarh, Visakhapatnam, Khamam and Konta in Andhra Pradesh and Malkangiri, Koraput and some parts of Nabarangpur.
Vehicles remained off roads while schools and government offices and shops were closed in the district. While some private buses were found plying, government buses from various places to Malkangiri remained cancelled. Besides, vehicular movement to and from adjoining Chhattisgarh and Andhra Pradesh was also affected due to the digging of a road by the Maoists in Sukma district of Chhattisgarh, police added. The security personnel had sealed the Odisha-Chhattisgarh border in view of the bandh and intensified combing operations.
CRPF jawan murder case accused held in Jamui
MUNGER: A police team comprising CRPF and STF on Friday arrested a Maoist and his accomplice from the forest under Chakai police station area in Jamui district. The arrested Maoists have been identified as Abbas Mian, 21, a native of village Madhupur under Chakai block and Mazid Ansari. Ansari is a named accused in an extortion case and subsequent abduction for non-payment of the amount. The case was lodged with Chakai police station. The police seized some detonators and fuse wires used to trigger landmines blasts from Abbas possession. Abbas joined the Maoist cadre five years back and was trained in guerrilla war.
He was second in command of the special platoon (guerrilla squad) of CPI (Maoists). Jamui SP Upendra Prasad Singh said Abbas has confessed to his involvement in the killing of CRPF jawan Heeranath Jha at Lakheri village under Khaira police station area in Jamui district on July 6, 2014. He also admitted to be involved in a number of other violence, including encounters with police in different parts of the district, the SP said and added Abbas figured as one of the 15 named accused in the FIR instituted by the Khaira police in connection with the killing of Jha. During interrogation, the SP said, Abbas disclosed his involvement in kidnapping of a Buxar-based trader Krishna Sah from his village Madhupur and killed in early 2013 on suspicion that he was spying for the police and buried his body in the forest.