Thursday, April 16, 2009

Naxal armoury: from Russian to US and even Chinese guns

New Delhi (PTI): The Naxals, who stunned security agencies on Wednesday by using rocket launchers for the first time in its attack on a BSF camp in Rohtas district of Bihar, have now acquired weapons made in Russia, US and even China.

According to official sources, the Naxals have started using a wide range of weapons ranging from the World War II era .303 rifles to fully automatic assault rifles.

The CRPF, having the mandate to deal with Naxal menace, besides fighting insurgents in Northeast and Jammu and Kashmir had seized 1,714 arms in the last financial year (2008-09).

Interestingly, the maximum seizures (1,040 arms) were from the Naxal-affected Orissa, where over 200 Left-wing extremists had mounted attack on a CISF guarded NALCO mine last week resulting in the death of 11 security personnel.

Sources said various Naxal 'dalams' (units) are using lethal foreign arms including the US-made SMG Thomson guns, AK-47 rifles and a number of Russian and Chinese rifles and pistols.

They said the weapons used by the Naxals vary from state to state.

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