Thursday, August 06, 2009

Maoists torch mobile towers

TNN 6 August 2009, 10:37pm IST

KORAPUT: Maoists torched battery rooms of two towers of private cellular operators at Dandabadi and Kaliaatal in the district. Around 10 p.m. on
Wednesday, 15 Maoists reached Dandabadi, destroyed the tower and torched the battery room before heading towards Kaliaatal, that is seven km from Dandabadi.

"There is no report of assault or casualty. Frequent patrolling in the area is not possible because these are quite remote. The rebels have left a few banners and posters at the spot. We are investigating," sub-divisional police officer (Jeypore) Prakash Patra said.

On Sunday, the Red rebels had damaged a mobile tower at Bobaya. The extremists damaged there mobile towers, including a BSNL telephone exchange, at Kakrigumma, about 40 km from Koraput on June 26. On July 28, they had blown up two mobile towers in Malkangiri district.

Maoist attacks on security personnel, state-run vehicles and police stations are nothing new in this part of the state. But, towers of cellphones seem to be the latest target of the extremists. According to sources, Maoists are trying to destroy communication network in the district so that security personnel cannot get information regarding their movement.

Policemen engaged in anti-Maoist operations are worried over this disturbing trend. "The Red rebels frequently target electricity towers in Chhattisgarh but here they are targeting mobile towers to disable community network," said a police officer. The officer said it is quite difficult to provide round-the-clock security coverage to all mobile towers.

In another development, several Maoists posters and banners were found at Chitrakonda in Malkangiri district on Thursday. Sources said the rebels through the posters have asked locals to cooperate during Kranti Diwas that they are going to observe on August 9.

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