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UP: Terror attack on CRPF camp, 8 killed
January 01, 2008 14:34 IST
Last Updated: January 01, 2008 20:40 IST
Seven Central Reserve Police Force personnel were among eight persons killed and five injured when heavily-armed terrorists stormed a camp of the paramilitary force in the wee hours on Tuesday in Rampur, Uttar Pradesh.
After carrying out the audacious attack at the CRPF recruitment centre, all the four suspected Lashkar-e-Tayiba terrorists managed to escape and a hunt has been launched to apprehend them in Rampur and neighbouring districts.
Armed with AK-47 rifles and grenades, a group of four terrorists in CRPF uniform swooped on the sentry post located along a railway track within the centre at 0230 hours, killing four paramilitary personnel and a rickshaw puller, Inspector General (Operations) of CRPF A P Maheshwari said.
After the first attack, the terrorists hurled a grenade at the main gate besides firing indiscriminately, he said, adding that the terrorists possibly wanted to sneak into the armoury of the camp.
The quick reaction team of the recruitment centre hit back at the terrorists forcing three of them to flee. One, however, managed to enter the administrative block of the centre where he killed three unarmed CRPF men, Maheshwari said.
The CRPF personnel fired at the lone terrorist who also managed to escape from the recruitment centre, spread over 150 acres, under the cover of darkness, Maheshwari said.
Intermittent firing was heard at around 1300 hours from a distance as the state police, assisted by the CRPF, conducted combing operations in the area surrounded by sugarcane plantations and jungle.
Five security personnel -- three CRPF jawans and one each from state police and home guards -- were injured in the gunbattle.
Additional Director General (Law and Order) five CRPF personnel were killed in sleep.
Two terrorists who entered the premises of the CRPF centre were also injured in the exchange of fire, said Inspector-General of Police, Bareilly zone, Gurubachan Singh.
The attack on the CRPF recruitment centre came just over a month after a series of terror blasts ripped through three court premises in Lucknow, Faizabad and Varanasi in the state killing 13 people.
Tuesday's incident sparked an alert at all CRPF bases across the country.
Maheshwari said the attack was carried out by terrorists as CRPF was fighting counter-insurgency operations throughout the country.
"However, it seems that now terrorists were striking at bases, which were generally used for administrative purposes," he said.
After the attack, the Centre and Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati were involved in a blame-game.
While Mayawati accused the paramilitary force of being lax despite a warning in advance from the state government about the threat, central security agencies said they had warned CRPF as well as Uttar Pradesh Police about the possibility of a suicide attack at CRPF recruitment centres by Pakistan-based terror group Lashker-e-Tayiba.
The Union Home Ministry has sought a detailed report from Uttar Pradesh government on the terrorist strike at Rampur.