Thursday, June 04, 2009

Maoists gun down 3 cops in Bankura

4 Jun 2009, 0450 hrs IST, TNN

SARENGA (Bankura): Maoists ambushed a police patrol when they were having lunch at Simlipal’s Piralgiri More on Wednesday, killing three in cold
blood. Two constables are critically injured.

Police suspect the Maoists had kept a watch on the police team’s movements for some time. A 15-member attack squad came out of Jangalkhand on Wednesday, followed the patrol party to the hotel on Jhargram-Bankura Road and riddled them with bullets. “Eight to nine gunmen opened fire from behind, without uttering a word,” said Lakshmirani Mandi, who works at the hotel.

ASI Biswanath Bera and constables Bishnupada Saha and Gopal Dey died on the spot. The Maoists then moved to the parked van, where constable Nripendranath Das and NVF’s Balaram Maity sat petrified. The duo tried to put up a fight but were outnumbered and shot in the head. They are at Bankura Hospital.

The attackers fled with an SLR, three .303 rifles and a revolver. “They had some motorcycles hidden among the trees and sped away shouting ‘Maobad zindabad’,” said hotel owner Kalachand Das.

Police suspect the motive for the attack was to loot weapons. Another reason could be that the Sarenga police have repeatedly raided nearby villages in search of Maoists in the past few months.

Panic spread after the attack. Shops shut and the road was deserted for the rest of the day. Bankura SP Vishal Garg is leading the hunt for the attackers, who fled to the jungles in Simlipal or Belpahari or towards Khatra.

CPM district secretary Amiya Patra condemned the incident, saying Maoists were trying to unleash a reign of terror in the area. But Trinamool district president Kashinath Mishra blamed police for “failing to restore peace in the area”.

3 policemen killed in alleged Maoist attack

Staff Reporter

KOLKATA: Three policemen were killed and two others injured when they were shot from point blank range by suspected Maoists in West Bengal’s Bankura district on Wednesday.

Two constables and an officer died on the spot. The injured were admitted to hospital.

Arms stolen

All of them had entered a roadside eatery at the Pirolgani crossing near Sarenga when they were shot by the five assailants riding motorcycles. They escaped with three rifles, a revolver and an SLR from the policemen.

Maoist strike in Bankura kills 3 cops

;Statesman News Service
SARENGA (Bankura), 3 June: Three policemen were shot dead by Maoists near Pirolgari crossing in Sarenga of Bankura district when they were having lunch at a roadside eatery around 12.45
p.m. today.

Eyewitnesses said about 15 armed Maoist cadres raided the thatched establishment where 51-year-old ASI Biswanath Bera and two constables ~ Gopalchandra De (46) and Bishnupada Saha (45) were eating and asked other patrons to vacate it. The eatery owner, Mr Kalachand Das, said: “Six armed men marched up to the policemen and asked them to hold their hands up. The others waited outside.”

“The moment the ASI attempted to crawl away clutching a cell phone in one hand, he was shot. The constables received bullets in the temple before the Maoists started shooting indiscriminately. All three died instantly,” Mr Das said. The Maoist cadres waiting outside then attacked a constable, Mr Nripen Das and one National Volunteer Force member, Mr Balaram Maity, who were guarding the Bangiya Gramin Bikash Bank ~ a stone's throw away. The duo were rifle-whipped. The cadres then punctured the tyres of a parked police vehicle and stripped the security personnel of arms before fleeing on motorbikes. Bankura SP Mr Vishal Garg said: “The Maoists picked up three rifles, one SLR and one pistol before heading in the direction of Lalgarh. We suspect they are members of the Lalgarh squad of Maoists.”

The injured policemen were rushed to Bankura Sammiloni Medical College and Hospital. Pirolgari is a crossing trifurcating the only metal road link from the district town to Raipur in Sarenga and connecting Lalgarh in Midnapore West with locations in Bankura. District police had introduced mobile patrols after a Maoist raid on a bank in 2006 (see chart). Police said Pirolgari was vulnerable owing to its proximity with the Lalgarh jungle.

Bus services between Bankura and Jhargram in West Midnapore were suspended after the strike. Pirolgari College, which was conducting an examination, shuttered its entrance. The last time Maoists had targeted policemen in Bankura was on 9 July, 2005

‘Maoists’ fire at patrol team, kill 3 cops

Kartyk Venkatraman
Posted: Jun 04, 2009 at 0251 hrs IST

Kolkata In a daring daylight attack suspected Maoists gunned down three policemen and injured two others in Bankura district on Wednesday.
The attack took place in the Sarenga police station area following which the assailants escaped with the police team’s firearms.

The deceased are Assistant Sub-Inspector Biswanath Bera (50) of Daspur in West Midnapore, constables Gopal Dey (46) from Hura, Purulia and Bishnupada Saha (45) of Khandaghosh in Burdwan. The injured are constable Nripendranath Das and home guard Balaram Maity.

Police said the police team was on a patrol duty in the Maoist-affected area and had stopped at a local dhaba at Pirolgari crossing for lunch when a gang of seven to eight armed men arrived on motorbikes and opened fire on the policemen.

The owner of the dhaba, Kalachand Das, told police that their colleagues used to regularly have their lunch while on a patrol duty.

While Bera, Dey and Saha died after being hit by bullets, Das and Maity were beaten up by the suspected Maoists.

Police said the injured were taken to a local primary health centre for first aid and then referred to Bankura Medical College & Hospital for further treatment.

Superintendent of Police (Bankura) Vishal Garg said a large-scale combing operation has been launched to apprehend the assailants. “The district border with West Midnapore has been sealed. It is too early to say who they were, but we suspect them to be Maoists. It is not yet known if they are based in Bengal or came from a neighbouring state,” Garg said, adding no arrests have been made so far.

As news of the attack came to Bankura district headquarters, senior police officers rushed to the spot. A police picket has also been set up in the area. Of the 19 districts in the state, Bankura, Purulia and West Midnapore are hit by Maoist activities. In recent times, Maoists based in Jharkhand have been more active in West Midnapore and Purulia, where their targets have been CPM cadres, district administration functionaries and police personnel.

Reacting to the attack, Governor Gopalkrishna Gandhi said in a statement: “I am grieved to learn of the death of three police personnel and injury to some others on duty at Sarenga at the hands of terrorists. I convey my sincerest condolences to the bereaved families.”

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