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Cash rewards to fight rebels

Bokaro, April 3: Police have announced cash rewards for villagers if they come forward with information regarding Maoists and help security forces thwart any subversive design of rebels in the run-up to the general elections.

Jharkhand additional director-general of police (ADG), special branch, Rezi Dungdung, in his letter sent yesterday to superintendent of police (SP) Jitendra Singh, said cooperation of rural masses was very important in the fight against Naxalites and thus cash rewards must be given to villagers to encourage them to come forward to help police.

Police sources said an informer would receive a cash reward of Rs 40,000 if his or her tip-off led to seizure of explosives weighing over 11kg. A tip-off about 6-10kg explosives will fetch Rs 25,000 and 5kg will yield Rs 10,000.

Similarly, a villager may earn Rs 10,000-25,000 for providing information about AK-47, AK-57, light machine gun and other automatic weapons.

“In remote areas, every villager knows each other by face. So, the residents can easily spot a new face in the area,” said a senior police officer, adding villagers could easily sniff any Maoist activity in their area.

Moreover, he said, para-military personnel were outsiders and they did not have minute knowledge of the topography of these difficult terrains. “So local villagers play a crucial role in anti-rebel operations,” he argued.

Stressing on better relation with the rural masses, the ADG also directed the Bokaro police to ensure informers’ identities were strictly protected.

“Several police informers were killed because police couldn’t not protect their identities. As a result, villagers often shy away from passing on any tip-off to police,” said another senior officer.

Speaking to The Telegraph, the Bokaro SP said he had received the ADG’s directive and started working on the mission.

“Villagers will be given cash rewards immediately. We are on this job very seriously,” he said.