The Telegraph
Tuesday , January 7 , 2014
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Operation Murli to flush out rebels

The killing of two rebels in Jamui was part of a bigger plan to free inaccessible terrains in Bihar of Maoists.

The Sunday’s CRPF, CoBRA and Jamui police encounter in Pathakchak forests was planned to conduct big-sweep operations in Maoist hotbeds.

The new blueprint of the CRPF and the CoBRA battalion deployed in Jamui for anti-Naxalite operations focuses on areas where government administration has not ventured for many years. Because of lack of government intervention, the areas have turned into rebel headquarters and are also places of Maoist activities.

The CRPF, along with the CoBRA battalion and Jamui police, have initiated Operation Murli from January 3. During the operation, two hardcore Maoists were killed in the hour-long battle on Sunday. The forces recovered huge arms and ammunition in the Pathakchak forests in Jamui.

Sandeep Singh, the company commander of the 131 battalion of the CRPF and who is also in-charge of the 215 battalion of the CRPF, said: “We have fought many wars against the Maoists in Jamui but it was for the first time that hardcore rebels were killed. The other rebels managed to escape with the body of one. But the other body is in the custody of the police. We have information about the presence of Maoist leaders like Chirag and the troops of Sidho Koda.”

Echoing Singh, superintendent of police Jitendar Rana said more than six rebels, including their leaders, have suffered injuries during the battle. “Intelligence has intercepted cellphone messages being exchanged among rebels,” he said.

According to Rana, the identities of the deceased rebels have not been ascertained yet. But the police believe that the 3.3 police rifles (mark-4) that were recovered near the bodies, belonged to Jhajha Government Railway Police. The Maoists in an ambush had looted the rifles from the Jhajha GRP armoury on April 13, 2008.

The forces plan to undertake more such sweep operations. The policy of the government, sources said, is to carry out anti-Naxalite operations, along with development works.

“Thus, it becomes essential that the less developed areas are brought into mainstream society,” said Jitendar Kumar, the inspector-general, Bhagalpur.

Sandeep Singh, the CRPF company commander, said after the CRPF’s camp in Bhimbandh forests was opened, the rebels had to migrate to places like Jamui.

“We have been concentrating on areas such as Charkapathar, Sono, Chakai, Khaira and Jhajha in Jamui because they are inaccessible. The rebels often flee to Jharkhand, Nawada or Banka districts of Bihar through the hilly terrains spread across the areas,” Singh said.

Operation Murli is a plan envisaged to bring together paramilitary forces and the district police. It also aims to provide them with the logistics to launch pivotal-but-risky operations, said a senior Jamui police.

“The force plan fresh offensive in such inaccessible topographies to flush out the rebels and usher in development,” the officer said.