CPI(Maoist) Claims Responsibility for Chhattisgarh Blast That Killed Dantewada BJP MLA
Bastar: Four days after an explosion killed Dantewada BJP MLA Bhima Mandavi and four security personnel, the Communist Party of India (Maoist) on Friday issued a statement claiming responsibility for the incident. The proscribed outfit has also threatened to carry out more such attacks in the future.
The statement was signed by Sainath, the outfit’s secretary of its Darbha division. Sainath reportedly masterminded the attack, which was carried out with the help of Peoples' Liberation Guerrilla Army (PLGA) cadre.
Sainath added that Maoists had confiscated guns and ammunition from the four dead security personnel who were accompanying the BJP MLA.
A day earlier, the outfit also claimed responsibility for another attack in which four paramilitary soldiers had lost their lives.
A group of 40-50 heavily-armed Maoists are believed to have carried out the attack in Bastar's Dantewada district near Shyamgiri hills on Wednesday. While the pilot vehicle in the convoy bore the brunt of the explosion caused by an improvised explosive device, the Maoists showered Mandavi’s car with bullets. The attack came just 36 hours ahead of the first phase of the polls in the state.
Sources also told News18 that the Maoists had planted IEDs on two roads, one of which Mandavi’s would be forced to take in order to reach its destination.
While voting for the Bastar Lok Sabha seat was largely peaceful in the first phase on April 11, sporadic incidents of attacks on security forces were reported from Gadchiroli. A few IEDs planted by Maoists were also recovered.
The Maoist hotbed of Bastar recorded a voter turnout of 56% on Thursday. Shyamgiri, the site of Mandavi's death, recorded a whopping turnout of 77%.
From March to June last year, the outfit had initiated its Tactical Counter Offensive Campaign (TCOC) in order to take on the security forces. The aim of the offensive was to indicate to the authorities the supremacy of the Maoists by targeting police, paramilitary forces and government establishments. However, heavy monsoon showers had hampered operations on both sides after June.