Saturday, March 14, 2009

Maoists butcher teacher on Holi

VISHVENDU JAIPURIAR
Hazaribagh, March 12: A government school teacher, who had come home to celebrate Holi, was mercilessly beaten up and killed by Maoists yesterday as they believed he was a police informer.

Kedar Singh Bhotka (45) and his brother Ganesh Singh Bhotka were dragged out of their hut in Gurudih village of Katkamsandi around 2am yesterday. They were both tied to a tree and beaten up after which Kedar was butchered.

Ganesh, who was later released, was undergoing treatment at the district hospital.

The officer-in-charge of Katkamsandi police station, S. Das, reached the spot today and sent Kedar’s body for post-mortem to the district hospital. He said a combing operation had been lodged to try and nab the culprits.

According to local terrified local residents, Kedar was posted at Parsabad of Koderma district and had come back to his village on Sunday evening to be with his family for Holi. But late last night, around 50 to 60 armed Maoists surrounded his house and asked Kedar to come out. As soon as he opened the door, he and his brother were dragged out and tied to a tree.

Other residents of the village were warned not to come out. The rebels made it clear that Kedar was being targeted as he was a police informer and a supporter of the breakaway ultra left outfit, Jharkhand Prastuti Committee.

An eyewitness said: “None of us in the village could do anything for Kedar. But we all know that he wasn’t an informer.”

After Kedar was killed, Ganesh was freed. The rebels left behind a pamphlet that listed “charges” against him, primarily because he was a police informer and was an active participant of the Prastuti committee that was harming the Maoists.

The pamphlet also warned local residents that all “such informers will meet the same fate as Kedar’s”. Local villagers blamed the lack of proper policing as the reason behind their continued insecurity.

“So far, the police have failed to provide security to residents of remote areas, which Maoists visit frequently. We fear more such killings in the future,” said the eyewitness.

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