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Blast before wedding bells

Ajay Kumar

Ajay Kumar was a happy man on being appointed as the station house officer and given charge of Naxalite-hit Tandawa police station in Aurangabad about a year ago.

He always wore a bewitching smile on his face.

Ajay was not only popular among the local residents but also had no strained relationship with the Maoist cadre. He was patted for his swift action in arresting Akshay Thakur, a prime accused in the Delhi gangrape case last year.

Tandawa, about 45km south of Aurangabad district headquarters, was Ajay’s first posting as the station house officer. A sub-inspector of police of 2009 batch, 32-year-old Ajay was known as an efficient officer and was awarded by the district police chief for the arrest of several senior Maoist leaders in the past one year.

He shot to fame after the arrest of Akshay from his native village Lahangkarma on December 22, 2012.

Akshay had fled from the national capital after the shocking incident and taken shelter at his native village from where he was picked up by a police team headed by Ajay. Subsequently, he was taken to Delhi.

The residents as well as his colleagues recalled him as a brave cop.

“He never hesitated in moving out of the police station at night even in the villages considered to be influential pockets of the Maoists,” recalled a sub-inspector of police, who had earlier worked with him at Tandawa police station.

About six feet tall with fair complexion, Ajay was scheduled to tie the nuptial knot in February next year.

“He had returned only four days ago from his native village in Gaya after his sister’s wedding,” said Vijay Kumar Singh, a Special Auxiliary Police officer deployed at the police station.

Putting up a brave face, Ajay’s father Ramshobhit Poddar, a retired employee of Damodar Valley Corporation (DVC), said: “Such things happen in a police job. But the government should at least make a policy so that police officers are shifted from the Maoist-hit areas on regular intervals,” he added.

The hapless father said it was obvious that police personnel posted in Naxalite-hit areas initiate action against the rebels.

“Being posted for a long time they often become target of the rebels,” an aggrieved Ramshobhit said at his official quarter. He said Ajay was scheduled to get married next year and preparations were being done for the marriage.

“But it was the misfortune of the family that he is no more now,” he told The Telegraph.