Millennium Post

Anti-Maoist operations will be intensified, says Jharkhand top cop

Jharkhand Police chief Rajeev Kumar on Wednesday said that anti-Maoist operations would be intensified across the state, a day after Maoists killed a police officer and five other policemen in Dumka district.

After laying a wreath on the body of slain SP of Pakur Amarjit Balihar at the Jharkhand Armed Police premises at Doranda here, Kumar told reporters that a state-wide operation would be launched against the Maoists.

Pakur and Dumka were also on Tuesday officially declared as Maoist-hit taking the number of such districts to 20 of the total 24 in the state.

He said that Tuesday’s incident was an ambush by Maoists.

Earlier, Governor Syed Ahmed and several senior government officials placed wreaths on the body as buglers sounded the last post.

The governor consoled the wife and two daughters of the police officer, an IPS officer of 2003 batch, who was a target of Maoists because of his tough stand against them since his posting at Pakur.

Chief secretary R S Sharma, the Governor’s two advisers, Madhukar Gupta and Anand Shankar were also present.

After the ceremony, the body of the police officer was taken to his home at Purulia Road here from where it would be taken to a church, before being laid to rest.

Balihar was the second SP to fall victim to the ultras.

On 4 October, 2000, the ultras of the erstwhile Peoples War, which merged with CPI (Maoist), had killed Lohardaga SP Ajay Kumar Singh in undivided Bihar. Lohardaga later became part of Jharkhand.

The Maoists had also killed several policemen, civilians and political leaders like CPI (ML-Liberation) MLA Mahendra Prasad Singh, JD(U) MLA Ramesh Singh Munda and JMM MP Sunil Mahato in the last 12 years. Terming the killing of the SP and other policemen, a cowardly act, the governor said a strong response would be given to the Maoists.

The sacrifice of the security-men would not fritter away, he told reporters.

Stating that the extremists should join the political mainstream as violence had no place in a democracy, he said ambush would not lessen the morale of policemen and they would fight with renewed vigour. The killers would be caught and brought to justice, he added.

State governor Syed Ahmad on Tuesday ordered home secretary NN Pandey and DGP Rajeev Kumar and senior police officers to rush to the spot.

According to sources, the escort party of the SP was caught unguarded as bullets were fired from both sides of the road. Before the policemen could even aim their guns, the SP was killed. The Maoists fled from the site after committing the crime. 
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