Thursday, April 09, 2009

Lalgarh face-off: Naxals take 9 CPM members hostage for hours

Express News Service
Posted: Apr 08, 2009 at 0156 hrs IST

Kolkata The stand-off between the state government and the Police Santrash Birodhi Committee (PSBC) at Lalgarh took a new turn after suspected Maoists abducted nine members of the CPM from Sarenga village in Bankura district on Tuesday morning.
The Maoists later escaped to Lalgarh. After day-long negotiations between the state administration and members of the committee, the CPM members were released in the evening.

“Nine people, one of them related to a panchayat pradhan, were kidnapped in the morning and later the police came to know that they were taken to Lalgarh. As the district magistrate and the superintendent of police tried to enter Lalgarh, tribal women, armed with weapons, blocked their way. Talks have been initiated with the committee members,” Home Secretary Ardhendu Sen said in the afternoon.

The PSBC members, however, said the CPM members had not been kidnapped at all. “They faced some problems and took refuge in our village. However, they were released in the evening,” Shyamal Mahato, a member of the committee, told The Indian Express. Inspector General, law and order, Raj Kanojia also confirmed that the CPM members have been released.

Two of the attackers were later apprehended by the locals and handed over to the police.

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