Intellectuals write to PC over 'excess' in Lalgarh

Undeterred by their complaint, the security forces on Thursday further upped their ante and were reportedly finetuning their strategy to re-start the operation simultaneously from two fronts—Lalgarh and Goaltor—sometime on Friday to weed out the holed-up Maoist ultras in the adjoining villages.

“In our letter to Chidambaram, we’ve narrated our experience and tales of atrocities that we had heard from the tribals. We’ve also demanded that the security operations be stopped and a ceasefire declared to facilitate talks between the ultras and the administration,” said theatre personality Kaushik Sen here on Thursday. He was part of the delegation of intellectuals that visited the rebel enclave, about 190 km from the city, where the state had virtually abdicated its role to hundreds of armed Maoists till a full-scale security operation restored a semblance of law and order.

The West Midnapore district administration had already filed a complaint against the intellectuals in the Lalgarh police station, alleging that they had violated the prohibitory orders in the area. At this, film director Aparna Sen expressed surprise: “We were in touch with the chief secretary before our visit. He never told us about the prohibitory order. Also, many mediapersons were with us. Why didn’t the police stop us then?” she asked.

Security beefed up
Meanwhile, the authorities have beefed up security by roping in ten companies of paramilitary troopers from Jharkhand on Thursday. They  will be split into groups to assist Cobra commandos. As per a tentative plan, the forces on Friday will start a march from Lalgarh to Ramgarh along a 22-km road, while another group will leave for Lalgarh from the Goaltor front in a “scissor attack formation”, sources said.
The Cobra commandoes have thoroughly combed the nearby jungles and villages to flush out the Maoists and seized unauthorised arms.

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