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Mine near MP venue

A 10kg landmine, found in a Ghatshila village, 90km from the steel city, on Wednesday morning hours before Jamshedpur sitting MP Ajoy Kumar’s jan sampark campaign, has prompted the JVM to cry threat to its star candidate.

The party’s central committee leader Abhay Singh dashed a letter to chief election commissioner V.S. Sampath, state chief electoral officer P.K. Jajoria and East Singhbhum deputy commissioner-cum-returning officer Amitabh Kaushal, hinting at conspiracy.

“We believe some political party with support from Maoists took up this strategy to frighten our leaders. They don’t want us to mingle with villagers of Maheshduba. They are afraid of the popularity of our sitting MP. So, they are threatening him and other senior party leaders,” Singh later told reporters.

The JVM leader further said that they had informed the local administration about their “mass contact programme” a fortnight in advance and still the threat remained. “We will seek extra cover during our helicopter campaign after March 28,” he added.

East Singhbhum rural SP Shailendra Kumar Sinha said they had acted on a tip-off to seize the landmine. “It was a joint operation with the CRPF’s 193rd battalion. We suspect the 10kg mine was planted under the culvert, where we found it, last (Tuesday) night,” Sinha said.

He added that the landmine was defused by the CRPF’s bomb disposal squad. “We have stepped up anti-rebel operations in the wake of the polls.”