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Rebel bid to win support

Ranchi, Jan. 4: Tritiya Prastuti Committee rebels are spreading warmth this winter apparently to win villagers’ support in their turf war against rival CPI(Maoist) in Garhwa.

The breakaway faction of the Maoists distributed around 2,000 blankets among poor villagers in Ranka forest area of the district yesterday. The rebels continued their philanthropy this morning too, distributing another 2,000 blankets among the villagers.

“Around 50 armed rebels handed over blankets to villagers last evening as well as this morning,” a villager told The Telegraph on condition of anonymity.

Sources said the group of masked rebels was led by TPC sub-zonal commander Ajayji.

Superintendent of police (SP), Garhwa, Mayur Patel neither denied nor confirmed the report.

“I have also heard that rebels distributed blankets today. But it has not been established yet,” Patel told The Telegraph over phone when contacted for confirmation.

Local villagers claimed that TPC rebels enjoyed a tacit support of police in their fight against the Maoists.

Another villager claimed that the rebels were talking about construction of a panchayat bhavan, rural electrification and reopening closed mines and schools.

According to sources, Ranka forests, close to Ramkanda and about 250km from the state capital, has been notorious for Naxalite activities for many years.

In January 2012, the Maoists had blown up an anti-landmine vehicle, killing as many as 13 security personnel.