Maoists kill four persons in West Bengal (Lead)

November 8th, 2010 - 9:10 pm ICT by IANS  

Kolkata, Nov 8 (IANS) Four persons, including two Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) activists and the mother of a Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) trooper, were killed Monday by suspected Maoist guerrillas in West Midnapore district of West Bengal, police said.

“A CPI-M leader of Patashimul village was shot dead in the afternoon, while the bodies of Sandhyarani Mahato, Rashbihari Mahato and Owahed Ali of Ganakkata village in Jhargram sub-division were found in the morning,” said Jhargram Police district superintendent Praveen Tripathi.

A group of four-five Maoists, riding on motorbikes, attacked former CPI-M rural body member of Patashimul panchayat - Kanai Rai - at his residence Monday afternoon, he said.

“The group dragged him out and shot him at point-blank range. His wife Basanti Rai tried to prevent the attack, and sustained a bullet injury on her left hand,” Tripathi said.

She was rushed to Jhargarm sub-divisional hospital in critical condition.

“Kanai, who was away from home for over six months fearing Maoist attack, had returned this (Monday) morning,” he said.

In a separate incident, a group of Maoist guerrillas attacked Ganakkata village in Jhargram sub-division Sunday night and dragged out Sandhyarani Mahato, Rashbihari Mahato and Owahed Ali from their houses. Their bullet-ridden bodies were recovered Monday morning.

Rashbihari was a CPI-M supporter while Owahed Ali was an employee of the local block office.

“During preliminary investigations, it was learnt that Sandhyarani was killed because her son is a jawan (trooper) of the CRPF,” said additional superintendent of police (operations) Mukesh Kumar.

CRPF is involved in the ongoing anti-Maoist operations in Lalgarh and adjoining areas.

“Owahed was shot dead as his brother joined the state police as an assistant sub-inspector in Howrah district. Rashbihari was shot dead for allegedly working as a police informer,” he said.

“It is a matter of concern as six people were killed in Jhargram by the Maoists in the last 48 hours. We are suspecting that the squad operating in the area, led by Sashadhar Mahato and Suchitra Mahato, is involved in the murder,” he said.

Maoists are active in three western districts of the state - West Midnapore, Bankura and Purulia.

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