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Workers abducted from Jasidih

Dumka, Dec. 23: Seven workers, part of a group engaged by a Jamshedpur-based company to build a bridge over river Darhwa at Jasidih in Deoghar district, were abducted from a camp at the construction site by suspected Maoists last night.

According to police sources, the armed gang of eight, their faces covered with cloths, swooped down at the site near Bodhania ghat around 9pm, brandished their guns, and forced seven out of the 22 workers staying at a camp there to accompany them.

The seven are Piyush Minj from Balumath in Latehar, Rajesh Yadav of Bodhania, Anuj Choudhary of Jethutand (Jasidih), Nandu Yadav of Sikdardih (Jasidih), Sadhan Panda of Dhogor, Alok Patro of Khegra and Nitay Paan of Soydih.

Dhogor, Khegra and Soydih are in Bankuda district of Bengal. “The abductors had parked three jeeps about 300 metres from the construction site. They made the workers walk to the parking spot, which falls under Jamui district of Bihar, and sped away,” said a source.

About half an hour later, the abductors called up Upendra Pandey, manager of KK Builders that is building the bridge, from the cellphone of one of the captives, Piyush Minj, identifying themselves as Naxalites. “They demanded levy from the manager and threatened to kill all seven if the money was not paid,” the source added.

Dhananjay Yadav, the night guard deployed at the construction site, said the kidnappers remained at the camp for about half an hour.

Dumka DIG Priya Dubey said it was not clear whether rebels were involved or it was a handiwork of criminals. “Raids are being conducted in neighbouring areas of Bihar.”