Trains suspended as naxals seize station

Trains suspended as naxals seize station

Jamui, April 21 (PTI): Suspected naxalites of the banned CPI (Maoist) seized Narganjo halt railway station for several hours today after kidnapping the cabin master and porters to enforce a bandh called by them, leading to suspension of train services on the Howrah-Patna section of Eastern Railway.

Nearly 200 naxals swooped on the small station in Bihar’s Jamui district at around one a.m. and held the cabin master and porters captive, Railway sources said.

The cabin master informed the divisional control room at Asansol in West Bengal about the incident and that the naxalites claimed to have planted landmines on tracks, they said.

Trains, including Howrah-Amritsar Punjab Mail, Lalquila Express and Maurya Express, were controlled at Jasidih station in Jharkhand and Danapur-Durg Express and Danapur-Howrah Express at Jhajha station.

Divisional Railway Manager of Asansol division of the Eastern Railway informed the District Magistrate and Superintendent of Police of Jamui about the incident.

Contingents of special auxiliary police, government railway police, RPF and Bihar police rushed to the spot following which the naxalites retreated without causing any damage to the station or personnel.

The cabin master and porters were also set free by the naxals.

The naxalites have called a 24-hour bandh in Jamui district today to protest the death of their comrade Balgovind Yadav in Jamui jail recently.

A tower van carrying police personnel was shuttled between Jhajha and Simultala stations on both the up and down lines to look for landmines which were not found.

The tracks were cleared for train traffic around 8.15 am, sources said.

Vehicular traffic in rural pockets was badly affected due to the bandh.

“There is virtually no traffic on Sikandra-Narganjo and Jhajha-Chakai roads,” sources said, adding so far no incident of naxalite violence has been reported in the district.

The naxalites had shot dead two Railway Protection Force personnel and injured three others in a running train near Narganjo station on April Eight. They had also blown up the cabin at the same station in April 2006.

The Hindu


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