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No Congress leader behind Jagdalpur Naxal attack: Home Ministry sources

CNN-IBN
Jun 03, 2013 at 02:02pm IST

New Delhi: Union Home Ministry sources have reject a newspaper report which alleged that insiders were involved in the deadly Naxal attack on a Congress convoy on May 25 at Darbha ghati in the dense forests of Bastar in Chhattigarh. According to a newspaper report the National Investigation Agency (NIA) has claimed that four party leaders were in 'constant touch' with Naxals on May 25.

But Home Ministry sources deny reports of Congress leaders being involved in the attack. The sources says "enquiry is at a preliminary stage and there is no evidence to suggest conspiracy yet".

According to a report on DailyBhaskar.com "there were some insiders who were present in Congress camp. These insiders had been giving even the minute details of Congress' leaders to the Maoists."

Senior CPI-M leader Sitaram Yechury urged the government to expedite economic development of Naxal-affected areas. "The facts that come out should be investigated. This investigation should be completed very soon. The government needs to solve Naxal problem and needs to maintain political dialogue. The government has to solve economic backwardness too," said Yechury.

Meanwhile, the investigators will once again question Congress MLA Kawasi Lakhma, who was also a part of the convoy but survived the attack. Lakhma was seriously injured and is undergoing treatment at a Raipur hospital.

Naxals had used 27 to 30 kilogrammes of explosives during the attack on May 25 on the convoy of Congress leaders at Darbha Ghati, a few kilometres from Jagdalpur in Chhattisgarh. According to the forensic report which the National Security Guard blast analysis team shared with the NIA, the Naxals used Ammonium Nitrate, a very commonly used explosive by them, to attack the convoy.

Electric detonators with command wire were used to trigger the blast which left a huge crater on the road. The explosives were used to block and slow down the convoy carrying Congress leaders after which the Naxals started firing at the convoy killing several Congress leaders and security personnel.

The investigators also found 200-meter long wires used to detonate the explosive which had been planted a few feet under the road. The blast was triggered as soon as the convoy reached the spot following which the Naxals started firing.

Disbanded anti-Naxal movement Salwa Judum founder and Congress leader Mahendra Karma, Chhattisgarh Congress chief Nand Kumar Patel and his son Dinesh and former MLA Uday Mudaliyar were killed along with many security personnel in the attack.

While Karma, Mudaliyar and others were killed immediately by the Naxals, Nand Kumar Patel and his son Dinesh were abducted and their dead bodies were found early on Sunday morning a few hundred metres from the attack site. The Naxal attack left 24 at least people dead.

Karma was main target of the Naxals and he met a very brutal and gruesome end as the rebels stabbed him at least 75 times and also fired at him after taking him away from the attack site.

Nand Kumar Patel's body also had bullet and stab wounds, but less than Karma. According to the post-mortem report, Dinesh Patel had an axe like wound on his head and also had injuries from bullets and stabbing.

Senior Congress leader VC Shukla, who was critically injured in the attack, continues to be on ventilator support at Medanta hospital in Gurgaon where he was airlifted from a Jagdalpur hospital.

The NIA is probing whether top Naxal leader Katakam Sudarshan was behind the attack on the Congress rally that has exposed serious security lapses in the state and lack of security personnel to tackle the threat.

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