Friday, June 12, 2009

Blame game begins over death of 11 cops in Jharkhand

(Source: IANS)
Published: Thu, 11 Jun 2009 at 15:32 ISTF Prev Next L

Ranchi: A blame game has started between police officials and the Jharkhand police association over the death of 11 security personnel in a landmine blast in the state's West Singhbhum district Wednesday.

Eleven security personnel, comprising both state police as well as the paramilitary Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), led by CRPF inspector Parimal Parmar, were killed when Maoists ambushed their convoy near Tithir village of the district, as they were returning after Long Range Patrolling (LRP).

The convoy comprised seven vehicles, but the anti-landmine vehicle was in the fifth position though it should have led the convoy, according to a security advisory.

Senior police officials blame the incident on the security personnel not walking on foot over non-tarred roads.

"The police personnel failed to follow the suggestion to walk on foot on the LRP," said Sudhir Kumar Jha, superintendent of police of West Singhbhum district.

However, the Jharkhand Police Association (JPA) has blamed senior police officials for the incident.

"Jharkhand police chief, Vishnu Dayal Ram has issued a circular that the LRP should be led by an officer of the rank of deputy superintendent of police. The LRP was led by CRPF inspector who had no knowledge about the geography of the state. The senior police officials avoid going on LRPs," JPA general secretary Chandra Gupt Singh told IANS.

"Police officials hold meeting in headquarters and do not invite association members to give suggestions. It is constables, sub inspectors and inspectors who fight in jungle areas with the Maoists. How can Maoist operations be decided in headquarters without consulting officers fighting in jungle areas," he added.

In Jharkhand, nearly 350 security personnel have been killed in the last eight years while fighting the Maoists.

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