Jamshedpur : Police and para-military forces started today massive combing operation at Sonua block and adjoining areas in West Singhbhum to flush out naxals who are trying to recruit children in the banned outfit CPI-Maoist.
A day after a group of 13 children, aged nine to 13, were nabbed from the clutch of a naxal while they were being taken to meet Sonua area commander Jeevan Kandulna, on Saturday.
The police arrested the rebel identified Cheimur while taking the children five girls and eight boys along at Gudri village under Sonua police station area.
When contacted West Singhbhum superintendent of police N K Singh said that the Naxals are trying to regain their lost areas in the West Singhbhum area. They have changed their strategy and are trying to recruit children and girls in regaining their position in the tribal-dominated West Singhbhum block.
The police and para-military forces started an exercise of area domination by carrying out long-range patrolling of the dense forest in Saranda.
The operation involves troops and officials of central reserve police force (CRPF), India Reserve Battalion (IRB), anti naxal Cobra force, Jharkhand Jaguar and Jharkhand police.
The CPI-Maoist was formed in Saranda in 2004 by merging the then peoples war group (PWG) and Maoist Commst Center (MCC). Hundreds of people including a large number of security personnel have lost their lives in several landmine blasts triggered by ultras in Saranda area in last one decade.
Notably, Saranda was a liberated zone for Maoists till August 2011. They had established the headquarters of Eastern Regional Bureau ( ERB) of the outlawed outfit. The rebels used to run more than a training camps in core areas of the forest including Bitkelsoya, Baliba, Thalkobad , Tirilposi, Bundijora and Ratamati.
About 10,000 CRPF personnel had participated in the last operation — Anaconda– which began on July 31 2011 and continued till September 1 this year during which the ERB headquarter was destroyed and all the training camps were razed.
Spread over 855 sqkm, these villages with a population of 36,500 did not see any development ever since they came under the control of the rebels in 2000. Three banned organisations, CPI(Maoist), Kishan Krantikari Samiti and Nari Mukti Sangha, were running the show in the area, rendering it inaccessible for people and government officials.