CASTE WAR IN CARNAGE BELT 

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By FROM OUR SPECIAL CORRESPONDENT in Patna
  • Published 9.02.01
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Patna, Feb. 9 :    Patna, Feb. 9:  Two members of the CPI(ML) Liberation were killed today in a group clash at Sikrahata village in Bhojpur district, reviving the protracted war between Ranbir Sena supporters and CPI(ML) activists. Armed Sena cadre attacked a group of backward caste members in the village in Etari block this morning when the latter were returning from Muftibazar. The attackers fired a volley of shots on a group of five men. Two of the five belonged to the backward Benia caste and the others to the Mahato caste. Two of those fired upon - Ramkumar Gupta and Lakhanlal Gupta - died on the spot. The others were rushed to hospital. One of the injured, who was rushed to the Patna Medical College, was said to be in a critical condition. Police sources said the Ranbir Sena had reignited caste passions to make their presence felt in Etari block. "We have been the target because we are fighting the feudal mindset of the Sena activists in the district who have unleashed a reign of terror in the district with the co-operation of the ruling party," said Prabhat Kumar, CPI(ML) office secretary in Patna. Ever since the Mianpur massacre in July last year, which led to the arrest of many hardcore members of the organisation, the Sena has been maintaining a low profile. It has been content with sporadic killings of its Marxist enemies in Ara. Sources said the Sena had recently held a secret meet in Danapur and decided to strengthen its organisation.