Record IED seizure in Naxal areas: Security forces alerted
Security forces conducting operations in Left Wing Extremism (LWE) affected states have been directed to be extra vigilant in view of enhanced IED attacks and an all-time high recovery of over 5,000 kg of the deadly bombs in these areas.
With back-to-back incidents of security forces personnel and civilians being targeted by using these bombs in the affected states in the recent past, central security agencies and the operations command of the CRPF have ordered a “strict observance” of operating procedures, usage of sniffer dogs, absolute discard of vehicles and effective gathering of intelligence every time a patrol goes out or an operation is executed.
A report prepared by these agencies states that as many as 1,702 Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) weighing about 5,908 kgs have been recovered from the LWE-affected states last year. The report, accessed by PTI, states that during 2014, only 523 IEDs were recovered and they weighed about half of what was recovered in 2015.
What has worried the security establishment is the fact that fatal injuries and casualties have occurred to the troops of central forces like the Central Reserve Police Force, Border Security Force and those from state police units.
“Gun battles are reducing between security forces and Naxals. It has been analysed that Maoist cadres are low on weapons and obviously no match with the security forces when it comes to fire power. Hence, IED attacks of the deadly variety are increasing,” a senior official working in the anti-Naxal operations domain said. While 19 troops lost their lives in the line of duty due to IED blasts and 67 got injured (with six amputations) in 2014, the next year saw three personnel getting killed and 47 injured (three personnel had to undergo amputation).
“Maoists have elevated IED warfare on the security forces using a cocktail of command wire IEDs to victim operated IEDs to radio controlled ones. They are capable of launching rocket attacks on camps of security forces, blowing mine proof vehicles apart and creating a minefield for targeting a foot patrol. So, wherever the forces are in conflict zones they can be targeted,” the report said. The official added, “Now, in the first about four months of this year, we are witnessing a spurt in IED related casualties and injuries again. While nine personnel lost their lives, 13 have been injured and two had to undergo amputation during this time period. About 250 such improvised bombs have been recovered this year.”
The last year, the data said, also witnessed the recovery of the highest number of detonators — at 20,871 — used to trigger these IEDs. In 2014, the numbers were a mere 6,643. “An advisory has been issued again to the forces keeping in mind the spurt in these incidents. Every week, such incidents are happening with the maximum being reported from Bastar area of Chhattisgarh. Not only personnel of the security forces, civilians have also become a target of these deadly kill devices,” the official said.
The CRPF, mainstay for anti-Naxal operations in the country, has recently admitted that it has witnessed a smart technique of planting these IEDs deep inside ‘pucca’ roads with Maoists creating ‘fox holes and tunnels’ to plant these bombs. One such technique of planting IEDs claimed the lives of seven of its men who were travelling in an un-marked vehicle in order to transport a cooler for a force dog in Chhattisgarh.
In 2015, a total of 41 such incidents of IED explosions took place which was the highest in the last five years, the data said.
Exchange of fire in Aurangabad.
Arrest in Dhanbad
Arrest in Bijapur
Anti-Naxal ops: Ten kg IED unearthed in Chhattisgarh
Security forces today recovered IEDs weighing about 10 kilograms which were concealed beneath a dirt track by Naxals in the Kondagaon district of Chhattisgarh. Officials said the recovery was made by troops of the 41st battalion of the Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) who were out for a road sanitisation exercise as part of an anti-Naxal operation in the area.
They said two Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) of 5kg each were recovered from the Ranapal area of the said district.
“The IEDs were kept with a delayed trigger mechanism to hit security forces. A number of students of the nearby village also use the road daily and they could also have been hurt had it gone off. The bombs were later diffused,” they said.
Maoists Instigated Koyas in Tadwai Incident, Say Cops
WARANGAL: Police sources investigating into the Tadwai incident, said Maoists may not be directly involved in the incident. It may be recalled that forest department’s jeep and hut were set ablaze in Tadwai by unidentified persons on Friday night. Maoist hand was suspected in the incident.
However, on Monday, police sources said Karimnagar Khammam Warangal secretary Damodar might have instigated Gutti Koyas (tribals) to damage the hut and jeep. The Gutti Koyas, migrated from Chhattisgarh, were cultivating in the Eturu Nagaram by felling trees in the forest area.
Recently, forest officials warned Tribals to stop cultivation in the area. Four days ago, before the Tadwai incident occured, forest staff went into deep forest area and destroyed the Tribal huts and warned them not to chop trees. The officials also set fire to bows and arrows used by Tribals. Meanwhile, Warangal police is taking the incident as a challenge and probing the case in all angles. They said there is a possibility of Maoists trespassing into the state from the neighbouring Chhattisgarh as water level in the Godavari decreased due to summer.
Against this backdrop, the Karimnagar and Warangal police have intensified combing operations in the Chhattisgarh and Maharashtra border forest areas. Meanwhile, the forest department has applied for insurance claim for the damaged Mahindra jeep and hut. Divisional forest officer of Wildlife K Purushotham told ‘Express’ that they had lost `6 lakh worth forest department property in the incident.
Activists denied nod to meet undertrials
Bhubaneswar: Police on Monday refused to allow a group of civil society members to meet three undertrial prisoners, who are undergoing treatment at the SCB Medical College and Hospital in Cuttack after their condition deteriorated due to indefinite fast.
The prisoners had begun the fast in the Jharpada Special Jail here on March 30 demanding expeditious trial of their cases. They and four others were arrested in connection with the February 15, 2008, Maoist attack on police stations and looting of armoury in Nayagarh in which 14 policemen and one civilian were killed.
Five cases were registered against them. In three cases, six of them have since been acquitted. Their complaint, sent to different authorities including the chief minister and human rights commissions (Odisha and national), is that trial in the remaining two cases though started in March 2012 has not made much progress because of non-production of witnesses, mostly government employees. This has led to their long stay in jail. They further said the high court had issued a direction to dispose of their cases by 2012.
The prisoners on fast were first admitted to the Capital Hospital here. Four of them were later shifted to the SCB. One accused called off the fast following doctors’ advice that sustained fast could endanger his life.
“We had gone to the hospital only to persuade the prisoners to give up their fast, but the police refused to let us meet them. This speaks of the highhandedness of police and jail authorities,” said advocate Biswapriya Kanungo. He was one of the members of the six-member civil society group headed by noted freedom fighter and former Parliament member Bhabani Charan Patnaik.
Kanungo said they support the prisoners’ demand because speedy trial is a fundamental right as it is an integral part of right to life and liberty of a person. Indefinite fast, however, is no solution to achieve the goal. He said the team had informed inspector general (prisons) and Jharpada Special Jail superintendent before leaving for SCB .
“We also contacted DCP (Cuttack), but he told us that he could not allow their meeting with the prisoners as they are under judicial custody,” Kanungo said.Official sources said director of prosecutions is likely to visit Nayagarh on Tuesday to discuss the issue of speedy trial of the prisoners with collector, SP and others there.
Maoists kill civilian in Odisha
The Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist) cadres have killed a civilian, identified as Gajapati Majhi, branding him as a ‘Police informer’ in Nuapada District, reports prameyanews7.com. Maoists killed Gajapati in a forest nearby his village. The matter came to the fore after family members lodged a First Information Report (FIR) at the Boden Police Station…
Separately, Maoist posters threatening to blow up the residence of Nuapada SP created a flutter in five gram panchayat headquarters in Nuapada District on April 14, reports The New Indian Express. The posters were found in Dharambandha, Chulabhat, Bharuanmunda, Motanuapada and Aamanara besides Torra village under Nuapada block where the Maoists had called a bandh (shut down strike) on the day. The posters demanded cancellation of a proposal to construct Police Station in Dharambandha and threatened that anybody defying their dictates would be tried in Kangaroo Court. During the bandh the villagers preferred to remain indoors and all the business and commercial establishments remained shut. Even vehicles and public transport remained off the road.