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HindustanTimes Thu,10 Jul 2014

Odisha: protests, violence ahead of Ramesh's visit

PTI   February 14, 2013
First Published: 14:25 IST(14/2/2013) | Last Updated: 14:33 IST(14/2/2013)

Four tiffin bombs and some threatening posters were recovered at Barkot in the Maoist-hit district, where Union rural development minister Jairam Ramesh is scheduled to visit on February 16, police said on Thursday.

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The tiffin bombs, suspected to have been planted by Maoists, were found on Wednesday at Barkot near the Sunabeda sanctuary, considered as a maoist den, said Nuapada sub-divisional police officer (SDPO), Ashish Singh.

While two of the bombs were detonated at the site, the rest two were recovered and neutralised by experts, he said, adding a search operation was carried out in the entire area to locate any possible presence of more explosive materials.

Besides recovery of the tiffin bombs, several posters and flag apparently put up by Nuapada division of CPI (Maoist) were found in the area where Ramesh is likely to interact with tribals, police said, adding the posters warned people against allowing the Union minister from entering Nuapada.

On getting information, police had gone to the area to seize the posters and ascertain their contents when the tiffin bombs were spotted, Singh said.

Following the developments, the Union minister may not visit Sunabeda sanctuary for interaction with tribal communities, police said, adding Ramesh is likely to hold a meeting at Barkot on the outskirt of the sanctuary due to security concerns.

Plans to strengthen road connectivity in rural areas, particularly in Maoist-hit regions, are being seen by the red rebels as a move directed against them. Maoists seem to be opposing visit of Ramesh as he has been stressing on roads network in rural and tribal areas, sources said.

Posters recovered in Nuapada said roads were actually not meant for rural development, they said, adding that Maoists feared that roads would be used for force movement in areas under their influence.

The posters underlined the need for improving facilities in sectors like education, irrigation, agriculture and other entitlements rather than constructing roads in forest areas, a police official said.


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