CPI-M office torched, 2,000 cadres leave Lalgarh

June 16th, 2009 - 1:25 am ICT by IANS  

Kolkata, June 15 (IANS) An office of the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) was torched Monday and 2,000 of its cadres were forced to flee West Bengal’s troubled Lalgarh in West Mindapore district after clashes with a tribal body.
The tribals, led by the People’s Committee Against Police Atrocities (PCAPA), also allegedly set afire the house of Anuj Pandey - a top CPI-M leader in Lalgarh - and also forced the police to wind up three camps set up in the area.

“At least 2,000 CPI-M men have fled Lalgarh. All their top leaders have also left the place. They have been sheltered in camps at Bandhgora in nearby Jhargram”, said a district police officer.

The PCAPA brought out big rallies throughout the day Monday as the police and the administration seemed to have virtually seized toe exist there.

“We are concerned over the situation in Lalgarh. We have asked for reinforcements,” said West Midnapore district magistrate N S NIGAM.

Three CPI-M members were killed in the clashes with the PCAPA Sunday following which the tribal body has virtually established a free zone in Lalgarh.

Meanwhile, a Maoist leader Bikash admitted to visiting journalists in Lalgarh that their cadres were playing a key role in the “resistance” against police and CPI-M there.

Lalgarh has been on the boil since last November following a landmine explosion targeting the convoy of Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee and two union ministers.

The tribals, backed by suspected Marxists, have been on a collision course with the administration over alleged police atrocities in the wake of the explosion.

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