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'Surrendered Maoists are BJP cadres'

A senior MLA of the state's ruling BJP has claimed that most of the surrendered Maoists are BJP cadres and he personally knows them.

india Updated: Jan 07, 2007 17:47 IST

In a new twist to the alleged surrender of 79 Maoists before Chief Minister Raman Singh in December last year, a senior MLA of the state's ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has claimed that most of the surrendered Maoists are BJP cadres and he personally knows them.

Mahesh Baghel, who represents Keshkal constituency, said that few power-hungry police officials had hatched a conspiracy to brand innocent farmers as Maoists.

Keshkal assembly seat is in Bastar region that has been a Maoist stronghold for over a decade.

"Those who surrendered before the CM and state home minister Ramvichar Netam as Maoists in Raipur on December 3 last year are farmers though most of them are BJP cadres and I personally know them," Baghel told reporters late on Saturday.

"The surrendered persons are in no way linked to Maoists. It's shocking to know that the police had even nabbed farmers to surrender as Maoists. I have informed the CM yesterday about how the police are trapping innocent civilians in order to get promotion and instant fame," Baghel told on Sunday over the telephone.

Just after the surrender of Maoists last year, Singh had described the incident as "a historic occasion".

BJP Lok Sabha member Sohan Potai, who represents Kanker constituency, has also spoken about the surrender of fake Maoists.

"Potai met Raman Singh in Raipur on Saturday at the secretariat and condemned the move of police officials to force the farmers and BJP cadres to surrender as Maoists," informed sources said.

According to sources, Raman Singh has expressed shock over the stunning revelations and assured Potai and Baghel about looking into the matter.

Meanwhile, stepping up its attack on the BJP, Opposition Congress on Sunday demanded an investigation by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) into the incident.