Pro-Maoist group’s shutdown paralyses life in West Bengal areas

August 3rd, 2010 - 6:30 pm ICT by IANS  

Kolkata, Aug 3 (IANS) Normal life was paralysed in Maoist-affected areas of three West Bengal districts Tuesday following a 48-hour shut down call by the pro-Maoist Peoples’ Committee Against Police Atrocities (PCAPA) and its militant wing to mourn the recent killing of their supreme commander Sidhu Soren.
Soren was among six Maoist guerrillas gunned down by security forces during a fierce clash in the Metla forest under Goaltore police station July 26.

Jhargram district Police Superintendent Praveen Tripathi said normal life in the entire tribal areas of Lalgarh and Jhargram of West Midnapore district “has come to a grinding halt” following the shut down call of the PCAPA and its militant wing, Sidhu Kanu Gana Militia.

“Vehicles are not plying on the roads, shops and business establishments remain closed. Though schools and government offices remained open, attendance of students and government employees was negligible.”

“No untoward incidents were reported so far and proper security arrangements have been made to thwart any kind of situation,” said Tripathi.

The shut down call was by and large successful in many areas in Bankura, said Bankura Police Superintendent Pranav Kumar.

“A total shutdown was observed in Ranibandh, Barikul, Sarenga and parts of Khatra police stations areas of Bankura district. Maoist posters urging people to observe the shutdown were found in Dahala More in Khatra,” said the police official.

“The shutdown was observed in several parts of Bandwan and Raghunathpur police stations in Purulia district. The tribal-dominated areas near the Ayodhya Hills also show a total shutdown,” said a senior police officer of Purulia.

“The first day of the 48-hour shut down call by the PCAPA was by and large successful because most of the people chose to stay indoors apprehending Maoist attacks as they are observing a martyr’s week from July 29,” he said.

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