Monday, November 29, 1999

CBI names three Maoists, declares rewardCBI names three Maoists, declares reward

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Midnapore, June 17 -- The Central Bureau of Investigation declared rewards on Thursday for anyone helping to track down three Maoists allegedly involved in causing a train mishap in West Bengal on May 28. The amount is Rs 1 lakh for each of the three rebels - Umakanta Mahato, Bapi Mahato and Asit Mahato. "We have formed a committee with the CBI for the investigation of the Jnaneshwari Express mishap. We hope the CBI and police will get specific information," said West Midnapore SP Manoj Verma. The alleged sabotage took place in West Midnapore. Posters have been issued in English, Bengali and the local Alchiki language announcing the rewards. The poster read, "Any person providing information leading to their arrest will be rewarded rupees one lakh for each. The identity of the informant shall be kept secret." The CBI also issued a press release. CBI Director Ashwani Kumar has constituted a joint investigation team to investigate the incident and the derailment of the train. As many as 148 passengers died in the mishap, which the West Bengal government said was caused by Maoist supporters.His views were echoed by his comrades also. "Killing innocent civilians is not on our agenda. We have no links with this tragic incident and we sympathise with the families of the deceased and the injured," the statement by party state committee member Akash said.

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