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Centre to station two NSG squadrons in Bihar
Onkar Singh in New Delhi | November 16, 2005 23:05 IST
Central government has decided to send two squadrons of the National Security Guards and station them in Patna to deal with extraordinary situations arising in Bihar, like the recent Maoist attack in Jehanabad. This was disclosed by A K Mitra, special secretary home (in charge of internal security) at a press conference in New Delhi on Wednesday.
Mitra headed a home ministry team to Jehanabad on Tuesday and submitted the report to the home secretary V K Duggal.
"A decision has been taken in principle that two squadrons of the NSG comprising of 280 men headed by a Brigadier would be stationed in Patna to deal with situations like Jehanabad. NSG is a strike force and would act against the Naxals on the basis of the information available with us and any information gathered in future," he said in response to a question whether the force would be sent to Jehanabad. Mitra would be camping in the state for next few days to ensure that the security forces take action against the culprits.
"We have three-fold short term objectives to achieve. One to arrest those who took part in the raids on the jail. Free the abducted persons from their custody and re-arrest all those prisoners who have fled the jail taking advantage of the situation on Sunday," he said.
Mitra said that the suprintendent of police Sunil Kumar had been suspended as he had been found absent from duty on the day Naxalities took over the Jehanabad town. "We have set up two member committee to go into his conduct because the allegations are that he was absent from his duty on that particular day," he said.
Home ministry has passed orders that all important Naxal leaders in the 22 Naxal affected districts of Bihar should be shifted to other jails where possible or beef up security where it is not feasible.
He admitted that prior information about the impending Naxal attack on Jehanabad jail was available with the state administration and that the local SP failed to take appropriate action to avert the incident and meet the challenge of the naxalities when they struck on Sunday evening around 9 PM.
Jehanabad jail is a sub jail and it had more prisoners than its capacity. It could accomodate only 140 prisoners but had as many as 695 inmates when the incident took place," he said.
He admitted that the law and order machinery in Jehanabad had collapsed for almost two days but refused to take the blame for failure on the part of the union home ministry as Bihar is at present under President's rule." The ministry is an abstract body and you cannot blame the ministry for such things," he added.