Wednesday, November 20, 2002, Chandigarh, India





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14 killed as Naxals blow up bus

Hyderabad, November 19
In the worst attack in recent times, PWG Naxals blew up a state road transport corporation bus, mistaking it to be carrying policemen, killing 14 passengers on board, mostly tribals, and injuring 16 others in Warangal district of Andhra Pradesh last night, the police said.

The RTC bus was blown to smithereens using a remote control device near Chintagudam village in a deep forest area considered a stronghold of Naxals, about 150 km from Warangal.

As the PWGs tactical error proved costly, the tribals, returning to Eturunagaram after attending a weekly shandy in Tupakulagudem, became victims of the blast that came in the backdrop of a fierce encounter in a nearby Ilapur forest area on Sunday last, in which five ultras were killed.

The landmine blast was apparently a retaliatory attack targeting policemen who were believed to have participated in the encounter, the police said.

The Naxals, however, missed their target and blasted a passenger bus as it crossed a culvert in the deep jungles, bordering Chhattisgarh. The dead included six women and two children. Six passengers, who received serious injuries, were admitted to the MGM government hospital at Warangal.

Under the impact of the blast, the front portion of the bus was blown to pieces and the mutilated bodies, including that of the driver and conductor, were strewn all around. PTI

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