first_imgGadchiroli encounter toll rises to 39 Gadchiroli encounter: Security forces had ‘precise’ info about Maoist location  A former senior Maoist from the Danda Karanya Special Zonal Committee, which is in-charge of Bastar and Gadchiroli, said, “The information could have come from the Maoists who recently surrendered and their contacts. I have never seen something like this in my 22 years as a Maoist. The cadres will not retaliate immediately,and will investigate and assess their strength before reacting.” A theory has surfaced, of the rebels being drugged through their meal.However, the Boriya villagers who helped the police in recovering the bodies from the river, ruled out this possibility. They said a Maoist camp was set up near the river and there was a long gun battle on April 22.In the second encounter in Jimalgatta on April 23, six Maoists were killed. Local sources said a senior member, Nandu, who was shown to have been killed in an encounter in Rajaram Khandla area on April 23, was seen with leaders Shrinu and Sainath on April 21. A question being raised is that Nandu and five other Maoists may have been caught during the Kasansur encounter and then taken to Rajaram Khandla forest and killed.Gatepalli villagers told Gadchiroli police that eight residents are missing after the encounter. “Eight families from Gatepalli informed that these eight people, including five women, had gone to attend the wedding in Kasansur. But another Gatepalli villager, who attended the wedding, informed us that they did not go there. We have identified 19 bodies and handed over 14 to relatives,” Gadchiroli Superintendent of Police, Abhinav Deshmukh said.  At 6 a.m. on April 22, when the Maoists were unguarded, bullets started raining from all sides and grenades were hurled. Some 64 C-60 commandos had sneaked in hours ago from the Chattisgarh side. Only some Maoists could retaliate, weakly. The police picked them out one by one and shot them dead. A police source said, Sainath used the weapons of other Maoists when he ran out of bullets, three times. But he could not withstand the heavy firing and grenades.Villagers in Boriya could hear the gunshots until 3 p.m. When the guns fell silent, the police saw that it was their biggest success in the five-decade-long history of Left Wing Extremism. A total 34 bodies of Maoists were recovered from the area. Along with a second encounter on April 23 in the same district, the loss to the extremists stands at 40 dead. No chance to surrender?The police claim they gave a chance to the Maoists to surrender and opened fire only in self-defence. This version appears to be at odds with the accounts of villagers. No one was spared, including women Maoists, who were bathing in the river or the injured who wanted to surrender. Those who survived the gun battle and grenade blasts were left with no option but to jump into the Indravati. Their bodies floated for two days before a local reporter spotted them and alerted the police. There were seventeen bodies floating and photos showed burn and bullet marks.Apparently, there was a tip-off from someone inside the dalam. The wedding at the centre of the operation did go ahead on April 22. Also Read It was a perfect ambush. So perfect that even the Maharashtra police special anti-Naxal Unit, the C-60, was surprised. Thirty-four Maoists were confirmed killed. And not a single policeman. Based on many accounts, here is how it apparently happened. On April 22, a wedding was scheduled in Kasansur village in Tadgoan under Bhamragad division of Maharashtra’s Gadchiroli district. The groom was from Kasansur and the bride from Gatepalli, the native village of Maoist leader Sainath who was in-charge of Perimili Dalam and the Divisional Committee member of the CPI (Maoist). The Maoists were coming to attend the wedding. For two weeks ahead, police had information that the dalams (a dalam has 10 to 15 Maoists) headed by Shrinu alias Srikant and Sainath were moving north from Kalled in Sironcha division of Gadchiroli. A week before the wedding, they were in Perimili area conducting a series of public meetings over the crisis arising from collapse of tendu leaf sale this year.On April 21 evening, the Maoists set up camp three kilometres from Boria village. They chose a difficult terrain near the Indravati river with a steep forested slope between Maharashtra and Chhattisgarh as a defence.Also Readlast_img read more


first_imgThe Odisha government is taking measures to face the extremely severe cyclonic storm Fani, which is likely to hit the State’s coast in the Puri district on Friday evening.Twelve senior officials were on Wednesday assigned for supervision of restoration works in the coastal districts of Puri, Khurda, Jagatsinghpur, Kendrapara, Jajpur, Bhadrak, Balasore and Cuttack. All concerned departments were also pressed into service to focus on saving lives and property in case of any eventuality. The State government’s Health Department has set up control rooms at all levels of administration.‘Foremost priority’“Evacuation and rescue of people likely to be affected to safe places, restoration of road communication immediately after cyclone, and proper distribution of relief materials with zero casualties are is the foremost priority of Odisha Police,” said State Director General of Police R. P. Sharma.Also Read As cyclone Fani approaches, RTGS warns against selfies near the sea  While the District Collectors were busy preparing the administration to evacuate people from villages close to the sea or villages alongside the rivers from Thursday, senior police officers have been sent to the coastal districts to coordinate with the district administration and other connected line agencies and field functionaries for rescue and relief operations.MCC suspendedThe office of the Chief Electoral Officer (CEO), Odisha has also taken several measures to ensure the safety of the electronic voting machines (EVM) in the constituencies along the coastal region of the State, where simultaneous Lok Sabha and Assembly elections were held recently. The Election Commission of India (ECI) has suspended the model code of conduct (MCC) from 11 coastal districts of the State to facilitate relief and rescue operations. Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik had on Tuesday urged the ECI to lift the MCC for this.Also Read  Mr. Patnaik had also urged the ECI to postpone polling in the Patkura Assembly constituency under Kendrapara Lok Sabha seat. The ECI had earlier fixed May 19 as the date for the polling in Patkura. Polling in the constituency, which was scheduled to be held on April 29, was adjourned due to the death of Biju Janata Dal nominee Bed Prakash Agarwalla on April 20. The Commission had not passed any order in this regard till Wednesday afternoon.Cancellation, reschedulingAs many as 74 trains have been cancelled by the East Coast Railway between Bhadrak and Vizianagaram from Thursday in view of the cyclone. Examinations scheduled in all colleges under the Biju Patnaik University of Technology (BPUT), scheduled to be held on May, 2, 3 and 4, have been rescheduled to May 25, 27 and 28 respectively.According to the Odisha State Disaster Management Authority (OSDMA), Cyclone Fani lies over west-central and adjoining southwest Bay of Bengal, about 680 km south-south-west of Puri on Wednesday. It is likely to have landfall in Puri district coast on Friday with a maximum sustained wind of speed 170-180 kmph gusting to 200 kmph.The districts of Ganjam, Puri, Khurda, Cuttack and Jagatsinghpur may experience extremely heavy rainfall during the landfall. Cyclone Fani: INCOIS warns of damage along east coastlast_img read more


first_imgBollywood’s new-age superstar Ranbir Kapoor officially launched his team in the Indian Super League (ISL) at an event in a Mumbai five-star over the weekend, with the announcement that the side would be called Mumbai City Football Club, or Mumbai City FC.The team is co-owned by Ranbir Kapoor and investment banker Bimal Parekh. The primary squad of players was also announced at the launch and the logo was unveiled in the presence of Nita Ambani and Ranbir’s father, Rishi Kapoor.Ranbir Kapoor”A dream has come true for our city today. As the Mumbai City Football Club comes to life on this day, I would like to share one thought you should always remember: the fact that this team belongs to not just me but 20 million Mumbaikars whose hearts beat here and who call the city home,” Ranbir said at the launch.The actor said he was happy to get ownership of the Mumbai franchise. “I could never have asked to get more than the Mumbai franchise. It is the city I have grown up in and a city I love,” he said.Ranbir as well as most of the other guests gathered sported the team’s bright blue and red jersey.last_img read more