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Chhattisgarh News
Naxalites shoot man dead in Chhattisgarh
24-10-2015

Bilaspur (Chhattisgarh): Naxalites shot dead a man in village Chunchuna under the Samri police station in Balrampur district, about 400 km from here in north Chhattisgarh on Thursday night.

A police team led by Balrampur SP Sadanand arrived at Sabag, about 20 km from the village where the body of the deceased was brought by the villagers. The body was returned to them after autopsy. Police did not go to the spot of the murder at this juncture because of security problem, as the area is almost inaccessible with no roads and the Naxalites had laid an ambush on the way.

SP Sadanand Kumar said that the deceased has been identified as Md Asim Ansari (48). His wife Maltibai is the sarpanch of the village panchayat of Chunchuna. This village, and the neighbouring Pudang lie along the borders of Chhattisgarh. Moreover, these villages lie about 170 km from the district headquarters. Beyond these villages, right across the Budha hill, lies Jharkhand. The nearest police post here is at Samri in Chhattisgarh, which is 30 km away and there is hardly an approach road. The region is almost totally isolated, said Kumar.

Occasional movement of Naxalites from Latehar in Jharkhand into these areas have been reported in the past. Each time the police launch a search, the Naxalites cross over to Jharkhand. The whole area is densely forested and mostly inaccessible.

Kumar said about a fortnight ago Naxalites had demanded sugar, rice, other rations and money and had also solicited at least ten youths from the village to join their ranks. Ansari, however, chose to ignore their demands.

On Thursday night, a group of about a dozen armed Naxalites came to the village at around 11pm. They were led by Bada Vikas, who is the sub-zonal commander and Bhanu Khairwar, who is the area commander, said Kumar. They woke up Ansari and took him away with them. His wife then raised an alarm and woke up the villagers, but they were threatened by Naxalites if they followed.

The Naxalites while taking Ansari along with them kept on beating him, saying that he was a police informer. They shot him twice some distance away from the village and fled into the jungle.

The villagers informed the police about the murder on Friday morning. A police team led by Kumar, Balrampur SDM and a doctor went up to Sabag, 20 km from the village as the villagers had brought the body there.

Samri police station in-charge Saurabh Singh, who was also part of the police team, informed TOI that apart from injury marks, Asim's body also had two bullet wounds; one in the head and another on the back. The wound appeared to have been inflicted by a 315-bore cartridge.

Meanwhile, Kumar further informed that it is after a decade that Naxalite violence has been reported in the region. About a decade ago, three-four murders were committed by Naxalites in the area. At that time, the Naxalites had waited an ambush for the police party to arrive. This time too, they had planted some IEDs on the way, which is essentially a dirt road, said Kumar adding that the villagers had informed police about the IEDs and had asked them to come up to Sabag, where they arrived with Asim's body.

Asked about further action to be taken by the administration, Kumar spoke of "revenge." He added the villagers have no sympathy for the Naxalites, a fact proven by the stand taken by Asim. The Naxalites did have a significant presence here about a decade ago, though.

October 8, 2015 was a milestone for the villages of Chunchuna and Pudang in Balram district, about 400 km from here, as it was for the first time after independence that any official of the district administration reached the villages.

The SP said the villages are almost completely isolated for lack of any approach road and very rough terrain. The villagers had voluntarily had constructed a dirt road to the village recently. On October 8, 2015, district collector Alex Paul Menon, SP Kumar and other officials of the district administration had visited the village along with PDS rations. It was the first time that the villages got their PDS ration at the village itself. It was this supply of ration that the Naxalites had their eye on, and had made their demands accordingly. Asim chose to ignore their demand and eventually paid with his life.

Kumar also said that after the villagers constructed a dirt road to the village, the construction of a road was sanctioned and soon tenders for the same would be floated.