Maoists retreat in Jharkhand, operations yet to begin in WB
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Last Updated: Sunday, March 14, 2010, 23:56
  
Ranchi/Kolkata: The Maoists have retreated from the Jharkhand-West Bengal border in the face of joint operations against them, but the drive is yet to begin within West Bengal.

"It has been five days since the operations began in the border areas, but the Maoists have avoided direct confrontation with police because they are not in a position to take on such a massive mobilisation of personnel," a senior Central intelligence official said today in Ranchi.

There have been instances when the Maoists engaged the police during combing, but none was reported during the ongoing operations. "They have retreated from the Jharkhand-West Bengal border," he said.

"There are also inputs about some Maoists, who depend on food from villagers, slipping away to urban areas for shelter as they might starve if they remained behind in hideouts and if the operations prolong and extend to new areas."

Asked about the possibility of strikes, he said, "Maoists might strike only when the operation ends."

Meanwhile, West Bengal Home Secretary Ardhendu Sen told reporters in Midnapore that operations in areas bordering Jharkhand and Orissa have taken place with the cooperation of the respective state governments.

Stating that 'Operation Green Hunt' was yet to begin within West Bengal, Sen said, "We will shortly finalise plans for operations against the Maoists in West Midnapore after holding discussions with administrative and police officials.

West Bengal has 27 companies of central forces and 20 companies of state forces, he said adding that additional six companies of Central forces have arrived, but "we have asked for more".

PTI


First Published: Sunday, March 14, 2010, 23:56


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