The three arsons by rebels of TSPC (Tritiya Sammelan Prastuti Committee) in Palamau and Latehar have baffled and embarrassed police forces of the districts and state headquarters.
A source at Ranchi police headquarters said the arsons, occurring in the wake of the new JMM-led UPA government elected in this Assembly election, would give the Opposition BJP the chance to say that Naxalism was again strongly rearing its head in the new regime.
The source told The Telegraph that the Hemant Soren government was anxious not to let this perception deepen.
“Policemen are putting their heads together to mull why the activities of the TSPC have increased soon after the JMM-Congress-RJD combine came into power,” the senior official said. “However, it does not appear to be a surge or revival of the TSPC, but a ploy to extort as much of levy as possible.”
TSPC rebels torched three vehicles and damaged half a dozen vehicles at a railway construction site at Maalhan on the borders of Latehar and Ranchi on the intervening night of December 30 and 31. Around that same time, another TSPC team set afire a vehicle in Palamau’s Munkeri road.
Latehar SP Prashant Anand termed the TSPC violence “a desperate move to collect levy”. Palamau SP Ajay Linda said they were trying to find out the factors behind the recent activities and curb them.
State ADG (operations) Murari Lal Meena said the two SPs “fumbled” when asked for explanations. The TSPC was no patch on the CPI(Maoist) in terms of manpower or weaponry and would soon be crushed by security forces, the ADG promised.