Railway minister and Trinamool Congress chief in on the Maoist hit list according to intelligence shared by top Delhi sleuths at a meeting with state and city police officers on Friday. The meeting at the Bodyguards Line in Alipore also discussed VVIP security arrangement during the Assembly polls.
The security tip-off was based on various interceptions and evidence collated in the last few months and contravenes the Left Front's claim that Banerjee is hand in glove with the Maoists.
The New Delhi team, which attended the session, comprised inspector general of Special Protection Group (SPG) Ramphal Pawar, special director of Intelligence Bureau (IB) Yashvardhan Azad and assistant director of IB Joshi. According to them, Maoists pose the maximum threat for VIPs during poll campaigns.
Banerjee is not the only name on the list and rubs shoulders with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, UPA chairperson and Congress president Sonia Gandhi, MP Rahul Gandhi, home minister P Chidambaram, chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee and finance minister Pranab Mukherjee.
What surprised state police officers was Banerjee's inclusion in the list but according to the New Delhi team the railway minister's name was put after receiving specific inputs.
According to sources, director general of police Naparajit Mukherjee, commissioner of Kolkata Police Ranjit Pachnanda, director, security A K Maliwal gave a thorough presentation of VIP security in West Bengal. The team from the capital also cautioned the state on Islamic terrorists. The Delhi team also told the state police on following certain norms in using choppers, which would carry high profile politicians during poll campaigns.
The helicopter must have 2 engines. Two pilots are a must with one having a flying experience of 50 hours at a stretch. The pilot also must have the flying experience of five hours at a stretch during night.
The CPI(M) have always believed that Banerjee is in league with the rebels and Friday's development is sure to surprise them. Banerjee in turn had said she sees no difference between Marxists and Maoists.