M A I N   N E W S

Naxals kill 9 abducted Sena men 
Central forces rushed to Jehanabad
Tribune News Service and PTI

Jehanabad, November 14
Nine members of the outlawed Ranvir Sena, private army of upper caste landlords, who were abducted during the massive attack by the CPI (Maoists) on Jehanabad district jail, were killed as 1,000 paramilitary personnel were rushed today to this town, besides two helicopters for air-dropping troops and surveillance.

Four persons were killed and an unspecified number of imprisoned Ranvir Sena men were taken away when over 1,000 armed Naxalites stormed the jail and attacked the Police Lines last night after snapping power supply of the town.

District Magistrate Rana Avadhesh told a press conference here that bodies of three believed to be those of kidnapped men of the Ranvir Sena, locked in an internecine feud with Naxalites for over a decade, were recovered from railway track near the jail.

Five other Sena men were believed to have been killed at Belagang in adjoining Gaya district, he said.

The body of prominent Ranvir Sena activists Visweshwar Rai was found at Pinjora village in Jehanabad district this evening, Inspector-General of Police (Prisons) A B Prasad said. Inspector-General of Police (Central Zone) A S Nimbran said: “Our first priority is to rescue the Ranvir Sena men.”

During last night’s attack a sentry, a warder and a Ranvir Sena leader Bade Sharma were gunned down at the overcrowded sub-jail.

The CRPF took charge of the jail with some manning the parapets and restored order 15 hours after the daring attack by the Naxals, the IG (Prisons) said.

The gate remained open till morning with a huge crowd of angry relatives of the prisoners protesting against the authorities for the attack.

Confusion prevailed over the number of prisoners who had either escaped or kidnapped by the Naxals.

The District Magistrate put the number of escapees at 341 of whom three were nabbed. However, the IG (Prisons) put the number of missing at 389 of whom six were recaptured.

Prasad suspended Assistant Jailor Anil Kumar for dereliction of duty and announced a compensation of Rs 10 lakh to the next of kin of the warder killed in last night’s attack.

In New Delhi, Home Secretary Vinod Kumar Duggal, who reviewed the situation in the aftermath of the naxal attacks, admitted security lapses and told reporters that eight to 10 companies of paramilitary forces were rushed to Bihar for anti-Naxal operations.

Two helicopters were being pressed for air surveillance and airdropping of troops in dense forests where Naxal hideouts were located, he said.

The state administration has 24 companies of paramilitary forces engaged in such operations. “We will try to increase the number of forces once they are eased out after the November 19 elections in the state,” he said.

Duggal said initial reports suggested that nearly 400-500 Naxalites attacked three places — the Police Lines, a college where electronic voting machines had been kept and the jail.

“While the attack was repulsed from the Police Lines and the College, the Naxalites were successful in climbing the walls of the Jehanabad prison from where they released their men, besides abducting 12-40 inmates of the Ranveer Sena,” he said.

Union Minister of State for Home Sri Prakash Jaiswal said the situation in Jehanabad was now under control. He said the paramilitary forces from the nearby areas had been rushed to Jehanabad. The minister said there were only eight to 10 men at the prison when the CPI-Maoists had stormed it last night.

The District Magistrate said an injured Naxalite Manoj Kandu, who was wounded in retaliatory fire by the police during last night’s attack, had given “vital clues” about the meticulously planned and daringly executed attack.

He said dreaded Naxalite leaders Ajay Kanu alias Ravi and Murali, who were prisoners at the jail and plotted last night’s operation, had escaped. Meanwhile, The death toll in the Naxalistes’ attack in Jehanabad jail yesterday rose to six today.

DGP Ashish Ranjan Sinha said the death toll increased with the recovery of the body of Ranbir Sena activist from Pinjor village near Jehanabad in the afternoon. The victim, who was lodged in the jail and was kidnapped along with other nearly 12 Ranbir Sena activists, was identified as Bihseswar Rai. He was about 60.

The police also recovered another unidentified body of one Naxalite behind the jail compound who was injured in the repulsive attack by the sentries in the jail. There were four deaths reported already, including Ranbir Sena activist, Bage Sharma, one sentry, Durga Rajak, one passer-by and another Naxalite during the shootout yesterday.

The police did not confirm the five dead bodies recovered from Bela near Gaya as Ranbir Sena activists .

According to the police, they were victims of a road accident. Meanwhile, journalists, both from print and electronic media, lodged their protest with the DGP Ashish Ranjan Sinha over the unprovoked police attack on them. The journalists also submitted a memorandum to the Governor Buta Singh.

The correspondent of Hindu, one reporter of ETV were among others who sustained injuries when the media incurred the wrath of the DM, Jehanabad, Rana Abadesh for focusing the failure of the administration to combat the situation in the morning and the related anarchy prevailing in the jail. The police resorted to lathi charge to disperse the media along with the agitating mob. 




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