Saturday, March 21, 2009

Police and Maoists exchange gunfire in Lalgarh


Published: March 21,2009

Midnapur (WB) Mar 21 Security forces and Maoists traded gunfire at a forest in Lalgarh in West Midnapur district today, official sources said.

A six member India Reserve Battalion (IRB) patrol on way to Bodopelia village from Chhotopelia, were fired at by Maoists hiding in the Bhaluk Khunia forest, District Magistrate Narayan Swarup Nigam said.

A police company proceeding towards Chhotopelia village fired back at the maoists, he said.

Casualties in the incident if any, were not immediately known, he said.

Earlier, in the day members of tribal platform, Police Santrash Virodhi Janagan Committee&apos, who have been boycotting the police for last one month, surrounded the IRB patrol at Chhotopelia questioning their presence in the area.

The Committee, however, had released the patrol after commandants explained that they had been posted in the area from their camp in Durgapur in Burdwan district and hence they were unaware of the boycott, Nigam said.

The Maoists fired on the patrol when the team, on their way back, was passing through the forest near Bodopelia.

A police patrol, which was informed about the IRB men being held by the Committee and was heading to Chotopelia came to the rescue and fired back at the Maoists, Nigam said, adding, the exchange of fire lasted for about half an hour.

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