Lalgarh: Police Officer in Maoist Custody
Posted by Admin on July 25, 2009
LALGARH: Maoists on Friday abducted a police officer in Lalgarh in protest against police atrocities on innocent villagers. A police team which
went to rescue the abducted officer had to beat a hasty retreat after facing strong resistance from the Maoists. Police do not have any idea yet about where the abducted officer has been taken to.
It was around 2 pm in the afternoon when a truck carrying water from Midnapore was heading for the Bhimpur police camp. Banamali Mahato was driving the vehicle with Santosh Murmu as his helper.
Deepak Pramanik, an assistant sub-inspector, boarded the truck from Pirakata police camp. He was supposed to get off at Bhimpur.
When the truck came near Pirrakhuli village, a few hundred people blocked the road and dragged all three out of the vehicle. Villagers claimed that early in the morning, a police team went to Belasole village and tortured several people.
The mob then took the truck deep inside the Sitalpur forest, where some armed rebels had been waiting. They punctured the tyres of the truck and set it ablaze. “When the Maoists asked about our identities, Deepak said he was a policeman. Then they took us into another area of the dense forest on motorcycles,” said Banamali.
All three were taken to Garwa village, where the driver and the cleaner were set free after a few hours, following initial interrogation.
But Deepak was not released. “He was badly beaten up after he tried to escape. He even bit the hand of one of the rebels who had been escorting him,” said helper Santosh.
Maoist leaders, however, claimed that Deepak has been arrested and he won’t be released unless he signed a declaration stating that police will not torture common villagers any more.
Meanwhile, PCPA spokesperson Chhatradhar Mahato alleged that a police team badly assaulted three villagers, including a Class-IX student, at Tarki village in Lalgarh.
Soon after news of the abduction spread, a huge police team marched towards Pirrakhuli to rescue Deepak. They had to return after the Maoists started firing and throwing bombs at them. Late in the evening, senior officers rushed to the spot to arrange a combing operation in the area.
Meanwhile, seven CPM panchayat members from Dharampur and Baita, including the pradhan and upapradhan, officially submitted their resignation letters during the day.