Durgapur, March 27: Six policemen, including an officer, were injured last evening when women Naxalites attacked them at Kendra village in the Pandabeswar police station area.
A huge force had arrived to comb the area for three men said to be involved in the murder of two local youths whose remains were dug up from the bed of the Ajoy. Twelve persons were arrested in connection with the attack.
A combined police force led by the officers-in-charge of four police stations surrounding Pandabeswar came under attack as soon as they entered the village. Naxalites, mainly women, armed with lathis and utensils first clashed with the police and then hurled bombs to repel the law-enforcers. The mob also damaged three police jeeps.
They were resisting “false arrests” and atrocities committed on their colleagues by the police in the name of looking for the killers of Santa and Krishna Singh, CPM supporters.
Circle inspector Provat Chakraborty and five police personnel had to be rushed to the sub-divisional hospital here after suffering splinter injuries. Police said teams with women personnel were continuing raids in the area to apprehend the women who had led the charge on the force last night.
Inspector-general of police, western range, Gautam Mohan Chakraborty held a meeting with his deputy, K. Harirajan, and Burdwan police superintendent B.N. Ramesh at Pandabeswar police station to take stock of the situation. “We are going to increase police presence in the village. We will apprehend the persons who attacked the police as well as those accused in the murders,” Chakraborty said.
The CPI-ML (Santosh Rana faction) has given the call for a 24-hour bandh in protest against police harassment, but they have not yet decided on the date. The CPM has called a day-long bandh on April 2.
The CPM had lodged an FIR against 18 persons for the abduction and murder of the two youths. The police have picked up 15 of them and intensified search for the remaining three ever since remains were found.