Tension after attack on rebel

Patna: Tension gripped Thathan Bujurg village in Vaishali after a murderous attack on former Maoist Tarkeshwar Paswan on Saturday.

Tarkeshwar, once considered close to self-proclaimed zonal commander of the Maoist, Musafir Paswan, is battling for life at the Patna Medical College and Hospital (PMCH). Tarkeshwar, 46, was attacked when he was sitting at a tea stall at Hanuman Chowk, close to the National Highway-77 stretch connecting Hajipur with Muzaffarpur, around 7.30am.

Three assailants in a motorbike reached the spot and sprayed bullets from a sophisticated weapon. Tarkeshwar suffered three bullet injuries and fell on the ground. He was rushed to Hajpur sadar hospital from where he was referred to the PMCH. Two police officials visited the hospital to record the statement of the victim.

Agitated over the incident, a group of Paswan's supporters blocked the road and paralysed traffic for over four hours. The blockade was removed and traffic restored in the national highway after the intervention of senior police officials. A policeman posted at Hajipur sadar police station said Tarkeshwar was involved in Maoist-related incidents since 1990. Several villages such as Thathan, Thathan Bujurg and Asadharpur were his areas of operation.

The police officer said Tarkeshwar had of late distanced himself from the activities carried out by the banned outfit and was engaged in solving social problems. He was a completely changed man, the cop said.

Sources, however, said Tarkeshwar had developed good relations with the police in the region, which angered senior members of the outfit. "He was being touted as an informer of the police."

The station house officer (SHO) of the Hajipur sadar police station Chitranjan Thakur said the reason behind the murderous attack on Paswan was yet to be ascertained. "Raids are underway to nab the assailants," he added.

"Additional armed police force has been deployed at Thathan Bujurg village, considered to be a strong hold of the Naxalites, as a precautionary measure," the SHO said.


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