Chakraborty — a state committee member of the CPI(Maoist) — was handed the reins after their commander Himadri Sen Roy or Somen was arrested on February 24. Chakraborty has been on the run for the last 22 years, police sources said, after he escaped from the Cooch Behar jail in 1986.
Inspector General (Law and Order) Raj Kanojia said Chakraborty was arrested along with four others in a police raid in Kotwali. Officers said the Maoists are in the process of strengthening their base in Nadia, recruiting locals and forming organised groups. Police had prior information that party leaders would meet in a house in Hanskhali, Kotwali. They laid a trap and netted the four.
On February 24, the Maoist party's state secretary Somen was arrested along with associate Dilip Mandi from the Hridaypur railway station in North 24 Parganas. Officers recognised him from his trademark stammer. He will soon be produced in the Barasat special court, and Mandi in the Chandannagore court in Hooghly. Somen has been charged with 'waging war against the state' and plotting the killings of several CPM leaders and police officers of Bengal.
CID officers said Somen had masterminded the killing of CPM leaders Rabi Kar and Mahendra Mahato in Purulia, Barikul officer-in-charge Prabal Sengupta in Bankura and Bandwan officer-in-charge Nilmadhab Das in Purulia. Reports said he had ordered the murder of CPM leader and school headmaster Karamchand Singh in West Midnapore's Belpahari on Feb 22. However, it is suspected that the Maoists struck back in the afternoon when they killed two personnel of the state armed police in an attack in Dahijhuri, 10 kilometres from the Binpur police station in Jhargram. These jawans were guarding the guarding the local branch of the State Bank of India. The miscreants looted two rifles and ammunition after killing the jawans. The area is close to Jhargram, Lalgarh and Jamboni, prominent Maoist areas. Inspector General (Western Range) Rakesh Gupta said: "This looks like the work of Maoists. We have begun an investigation."
The two jawans -- Samir Sardar (32) and Rashid-ul-Islam (29) -- were guarding the SBI branch in Dahijuri when the incident took place. Around 2 pm, the miscreants rode in two motorbikes and screeched to a halt in front of the bank. Before the guards could react, they began to fire indiscriminately. They then made away with the jawans' rifles and ammunition. The entire operation took 15 to 20 minutes before the miscreants fled the spot. The bank staff raised an alarm and called in the police. A huge contingent, led by district police Superintendent R Rajshekharan, visited the spot.