Security forces have engaged in 14 encounters with Left Wing insurgent groups operating in areas near Bihar-Jharkhand border and apprehended 50 alleged Naxals since the 2015 assembly elections notification was released early this month. According to officials, following the election notification, Naxalite groups based in Southern Bihar and Jharkhand have called for a statewide boycott of the 2015 polls due in October. Gauging the developments in the past two weeks and based on inputs from intelligence agencies, central government has further decided to increase security in Southern districts Bihar in order to produce a conducive environment for elections to be held.
Among the districts which will see an increase in deployment of security forces are Jamui, Jahanabad, Aurangabad and Gaya. A senior official of the Central Reserve Police Force while confirming the development stated that orders from the Ministry of Home Affairs have laid emphasis that a repetition of violence that was witnessed during the 2010 Bihar elections must not allowed this time around. In 2010, 10 officers of the security forces were killed in three improvised explosive device (IED) blasts that rocked Gaya and Sheohar districts of Bihar during the state elections.
While six officers were killed when a police vehicle carrying them was blasted by Maoists in Shayampur Baitha area of Sheohar district, four members of the bomb disposal squad were were killed in two separate incidents while trying to defuse IEDs planted in Banke Bazaar and Dumaria areas of Gaya district.
Official sources told dna that security arrangements this election will be more elaborate than the one in 2010. “The number of security officers will be more as compared to the previous elections,” the source said. The increase of deployment of personnel will be seen in the CRPF, Indo-Tibetan Border Police and Border Security Forces. “Ever since the elections were announced our forces have engaged in 14 encounters with Left Wing extremists.
During various area domination exercises we have been able to recover 60 IED’s ,55 ammunition and seven arms. 50 persons with Naxalite links have also been apprehend and the operation will mostly likely not end till the elections are conducted without Naxal group disrupting them,” said a senior security official posted in the area. The official added that the four districts that will see a heavy deployment of forces have seen some of the worst phases of both Maoist and Naxalite movement.” Among the districts which continue to show signs of Naxalism are Jamui and Jahanabad. But the threat extends to both Gaya and Aurangabad where we have witnessed violent incidents in the past,” added the official.
Jamui, where elections will be held in the first phase is the constituency of Lok Janshakti Party’s Dalit leader Ram Vilas Paswan. He was elected as member of 16th Lok Sabha after the 2014 general election from Hajipur constituency, while his son Chirag Paswan won from Jamui constituency. Aurangabad, which shares its border with Gaya district, has a predominant population from the landlord community, has also witnessed noticeable rise of Naxal movement. “We have received inputs of a movement against elections gaining momentum in these districts and necessary measure will be taken to counter the same,” said the official.