Two CPI(Maoist) rebels were arrested from Goyarbera forests of Manoharpur in West Singhbhum district on Thursday. A sum of Rs 1.92 lakh, a motorcycle and a mobile phone were recovered from them.
During interrogations, arrested Radhe Shyam Soy and Sukhdeo Tirkey revealed that the money was extorted from a contractor and they were going to hand over the cash to Maoist area commander Sureshji.
Police sources said the duo had collected Rs 2 lakh from Madina Khan, who had bagged a Rs 4.22-crore contract for constructing a 8km road linking Jorobari with Harta in Goelkera and had agreed to pay Rs 30 lakh to the Maoists to carry out the work smoothly. On June 24, he gave Rs 2 lakh towards the first installment, out of which the contractor’s manager took away Rs 1,000 and the rebel duo spent another Rs 7,000.
“We were tipped off about movement of unidentified persons, who were going to deliver cash to the Maoist area commander. Accordingly, we formed a special team to catch them alive,” said West Singhbhum superintendent of police Narendra Kumar Singh.
Singh said Manoharpur police registered an FIR against the two under Sections 411 and 120(B) of the IPC and Section 17 of the Criminal Law (Amendment) Act. Besides, the Maoist area commander and his associates Sandipda and Nirbhayda, the contractor and his manager Silas Bhengra have also been named co-accused in the case.
A senior police officer said the contractor and his manager had been named in the case for helping the Maoists and keeping police in the dark about the rebels’ activities.
Police sources said Soy and Tirkey joined the Maoists two years ago. However, they were mainly engaged in collecting levy from local traders, supplying logistics to the armed rebels and passing on information about police movement.
Police are now looking for 10 other rebels, who supply logistics to Maoists.