Maoists plotted the Silda attack, which killed 24 Eastern Frontier Rifles (EFR) policemen in West Bengal, about six months ago, CID investigators of the West Bengal Police have found.
Around 70 people, including students of Silda Chandrashekhar College, carried out the strike on February 15, CID officers told HT.
Maoist leaders allegedly handpicked the 70, who were trained for 45 days in a forest in Belpahari near the Jharkhand border.
“We have no hesitation in acknowledging the discipline and rigour that they (the Maoists) maintain,” an officer involved with the probe said.
Forensic evidence collected from the site indicates that the rebels had planted at least five improvised explosive devices (IEDs) before the attack to blow up the EFR tents.
Before storming the camp, the Maoists allegedly set off the explosives by wireless mechanism. It was earlier assumed the attackers hurled bombs that led to the fire in the camp.
But the forensic report has disproved these claims. Investigators suspect the explosives were kept under camouflage inside the EFR camp areas, and the movement of the jawans in the camp were tracked.
“After the attack, the Maoists planted three explosives at major entry and exit ... to deter security forces from other camps from rushing to the spot,” the officer said.