Chhattisgarh Maoist attack: 'Cops reached late; insider job suspected'



Zee Media Bureau

New Delhi: The National Investigation Agency (NIA), which is tasked with probing into the last week’s barbaric attack by Maoists in Chhattisgarh, has found that the local police reached the site three hours after the attack.

The May 25 attack in Chhattisgarh had killed 28 people, including senior Congress party leaders.

According to a daily, the NIA also found that the police were ill-equipped to fight the robust Maoist contingent.

In its preliminary report to the Home Ministry, the NIA noted that some media personnel had reached the spot at Bastar's Darbha Valley at 6:30 pm, but police from the Darbha Police station, located just a 10-minute drive away, arrived only at 7:30 pm.

In another finding, the NIA pointed out that the ultras used Chinese ammunition in the attack, supporting reports of smuggling of arms and ammunition from China.

The NIA said that no steps were taken to secure the route of the Congress convoy.

Notably, the agency is not ruling out the possible involvement of an insider in the brutal attack.

A daily has quoted NIA sources as saying: “There is no logical explanation as to why the Maoists killed (state Congress chief Nand Kumar) Patel and his son as there is no past record to suggest that the Congress leader was in direct confrontation with them. In fact, Patel was known to have a soft approach towards Maoists but still they went out of their way to search for Patel and his son in the convoy and killed them. The National Investigation Agency, probing the Chhattisgarh ambush, is of the view that singling out and killing of state Congress chief Nand Kumar Patel and his son 'don’t appear logical' because the Naxals left a lot of other local leaders, including former MLAs.”

A number of conspiracy theories are doing the rounds, with the BJP demanding that former chief minister Ajit Jogi testify before the panel probing the incident.

Maoists ambushed a convoy of Congress leaders on May 25 in a heavily forested area in Chhattisgarh, killing 28 people. Among those killed were state Congress chief Nand Kumar Patel, his son Dinesh, party leader Mahendra Karma and former legislator Uday Mudliyar.

The injured include former union minister VC Shukla, who is battling for his life at a Gurgaon hospital.