Police to place certificates of evidence in Kobad case: Court
New Delhi: Delhi Police has been allowed by a court here to place on record the certificates of electronic evidence relied upon by it in a case in which Maoist ideologue Kobad Ghandy is facing trial for allegedly trying to set up a base for the banned outfit CPI (Maoist) here. The court allowed the submissions of Special Cell of Delhi Police saying electronic evidence relied upon by prosecution was “relevant” and its admissibility would be considered at the final stage after production of the certificates under the Indian Evidence Act. “Submission was made (by accused) that electronic record relied upon would still be inadmissible even after production of such a certificate. At this stage, I may only note that electronic record relied upon is relevant,” Additional Sessions Judge Reetesh Singh said. “Admissibility of the same after production of certificates under section 65B of the Indian Evidence Act will be considered at the final stage. For the reasons recorded above, this application is allowed,” the court said.
It also allowed the submission of police seeking to summon two senior cops, who were earlier examined as prosecution witnesses in the case, for their re-examination to prove the certificates under the Indian Evidence Act. The court has posted the matter for prosecution evidence on February 8. 65-year-old Ghandy is facing trial in the case for alleged offences punishable under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) and various provisions of the IPC. The court had earlier framed charges against co-accused Rajender Kumar under various sections of the IPC in the case.
During the arguments on the plea filed by the police, the prosecutor said that certain electronic records produced in evidence were not supported with certificates under the Indian Evidence Act and in its absence, the electronic records would not be read in evidence. Senior advocate Rebecca John, who appeared for Ghandy, opposed the plea saying it was moved belatedly after recording of the prosecution evidence had concluded and the matter was at the stage of recording of statements of accused. Ghandy’s counsel also submitted that the police cannot be permitted to fill any lacuna in their case by adopting such asures as it would prejudice the accused. The counsel representing Kumar adopted the submissions made by Ghandy’s lawyer.
Two Maoists killed on Maharashtra-Chhattisgarh border
Two Maoists including a woman Maoist commander of the outlawed Communist Party of India (Maoist) were killed in a joint operation of Chhattisgarh and Maharashtra police on the border of the two states on Monday. “Bijapur district additional superintendent of police, Mr. Kalyan Elesela has conveyed over his satellite phone from deep forest of Sendra on Chhattisgarh-Maharashtra border that a Local Operating Squad (LOS) commander of the Maoists has been killed and her body has been recovered by the forces along with an INSAS rifle and five magazines. One more dead body of a uniformed Maoist was recovered when the forces were returning to the base camps in Maharashtra,” Bastar range Inspector General (IG) of Police, Mr. SRP Kalluri said in a statement.
“The anti-Maoist operation was jointly planned by Bijapur SP and his Gadchiroli counterpart keeping in view the TCOC (Tactical Counter Offensive Campaign) of the Maoists. Mr.Elesela led Chhattisgarh police team whereas from Maharashtra side, the force was led by ASP Manjunath Singh. The operation was launched about three days ago.The strategy was to enter Bijapur National park area of Maoists from Maharashtra side. Our forces led by Kalyan first went to Maharashtra side surreptitiously and then penetrated Bijapur jointly with Maharashtra forces which the Maoists could not anticipate,” informed the IG. One the dead Maoists has been identified as Mangi, the LOS commander of national park area committee of Maoists in West Bastar and she carried a reward of Rs.5 lakhs on her head. Mr.Kalluri admitted that Bastar Police recovered an INSAS service rifle after a long gap. “Forces are still deep inside the forest and fighting their way back to Gadchiroli. Preparations are on to airlift the forces, the dead bodies of Maoists and other Maoist recoveries,” added Mr. Kalluri.
North Zone IG visits Agency
Visakhapatnam: The state government has been reportedly taking a serious note of the naxals menace in the Visakha Agency following the brutal murders of three tribals within two weeks in the agency recently. This is reflected by the fact that North Zone inspector general Kumar Viswajit visited the agency areas last Friday along with Visakha Rural SP Koya Praveen. The two police officials also made a night halt at Chintapalli to take stock of the naxals movement in the district. In a sudden spurt in their violent activity, CPI Maoists had killed Vantala Satya Rao of Madatakonda in G Maudugula on December 22, Pangi Sivayya of Busiput and former sarpanch of Jerrela Sagina Venkata Ramana in the first week of this month.
Taking stock of the situation, Viswajit reportedly gave fresh instructions to the police officials of the Visakha agency in order to counter the extremist campaign, sources said. The police officials reportedly informed the IG about the naxal movement in the district and their increased presence in the recent months, the sources said. The issue of detention of few tribals of Kondrupalli, near Jerrela, was also discussed in the meeting. Cops had arrested about 20 tribals in connection with the murder of former sarpanch Ramana. The officers of the rural district reportedly reiterated the need for creating outposts at various rural pockets in the agency to control the Maoists menace, the sources said.
Maoists threaten to take revenge of killing of 4 colleagues
Aurangabad: Three days after an encounter in which four Maoists were killed in the district, Aurangabad SP Babu Ram on Monday convened a meeting of all station house officers (SHOs) and issued directives to them on combating ultras. The SP directed the SHOs to intensify patrolling in their respective areas and keep an eye on the movement of Maoists in the district after the encounter. Meanwhile, CPI-Maoist central zonal spokesman Pramjeet on Monday threatened to take revenge of the killing of the Maoists in the encounter on Friday. He alleged that their four colleagues were arrested by security personnel, who killed them in fake encounter. Pramjeet said dedication of the commrades will never go in vain and they would take revenge from the cops.
It may be mentioned here that four Maoists were gunned down in an encounter with the securitymen at Bandhgorya village under Dhibra police station in Aurangabad district. Police had recovered five arms including an AK-47 from the place of encounter. Even CRPF DG Prakash Mishra had rushed to Aurangabad to take stock of the situation. An alert had been sounded in the district soon after the encounter. Raids are carried out at various places across the district under the leadership of SP Babu Ram. CRPF, COBRA and district police are conducting search operations jointly to nab the Maoists, who escaped after the encounter. A CRPF officer, on condition of anonymity, revealed that the Maoists, who fell to bullets, were wanted in several cases of serious offence. It may be mentioned here that earlier Maoists had attacked Mali, Simra, Dhibra and Tandawa police stations and a CRPF camp at Madanpur in the district.
Former Red Cross boss threatened in south Chattisgarh
A freelance writer, Malini Subramaniam, who earlier headed the international humanitarian organisation, International Committee of The Red Cross [ICRC] in Chattisgarh was threatened by the local police for writing on issues concerning the tribals from south Chattisgarh. Sources told The Hindu that police officers reached her Jagdalpur residence late on Sunday night to ask her “why she visits the forest” and writes on tribal issues. Ms Subramaniam asked the officials to get in touch with her during regular office hours. The former ICRC official lives in Jagdalpur, the main city in south Chattisgarh, with her daughters. Earlier, a local organisation, floated by the police in south Chattisgarh- Samajik Ekta Manch- also asked her to refrain from writing articles on human rights violations in the region. “About 20 members of the Samajik Ekta Manch reached her place to ask her why she writes against the [atrocities committed by] the police and not against the Maoists,” sources close to Ms Subramanium told The Hindu.
Ms Subramanium had recently written a series of articles in a digital news portal questioning the arrests of the journalists in Bastar Division in south Chattisgarh, alleged fake surrenders and use of “rape” as an instrument to overpower the tribals in the area. Her and other journalists’ investigation led to a probe by National Human Rights Commission [NHRC]. Earlier as the chief of ICRC in south Chattisgarh, she set up two of the best medical clinics deep inside the Maoist-dominated villages of Bijapur and Sukma district.
The Hindu visited one of these clinics which were known for “comprehensive health care support.” The project was lauded by the officials of the State’s Health Department. The work of ICRC was even commended by the State’s Chief Minister Raman Singh. Later, however, ICRC was asked to leave south Chattisgarh as the External Affairs Ministry realised that the presence of ICRC in south Chattisgarh “may turn the issue into an international conflict.” Ms Subramanium left ICRC to settle in Jagdalpur to work among the tribals. Later she started reporting from the area.