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Sunday, 4 December 2011

Maoist rebels kill 11 in attacks in eastern India

Wasif Chudhary

Maoist rebels have killed 11 people in attacks across an eastern Indian state after their leader died in a gunbattle with security forces, police said.
The rebels blew up railway tracks at two points in Jharkhand before dawn Sunday to protest the Nov. 24 killing of Koteshwar Rao, alias Kishanji, in the neighboring state of West Bengal, police Superintendent D.V. Sharma said.
Hours earlier, they had attacked a police convoy traveling with a state lawmaker in western Jharkhand, detonating explosives and spraying gunfire that left 10 officers and a young boy dead.
Another officer was hospitalized with injuries. Former Jharkhand Speaker Inder Singh Namdhari escaped unharmed.
The rebels, inspired by Chinese revolutionary leader Mao Zedong, have been fighting for more than three decades in several Indian states to demand land and jobs for agricultural laborers and the poor.
Referred to as Naxalites, after the West Bengal village of Naxalbari where the movement began in 1967, they frequently target police and government workers.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has called the rebels the biggest internal threat to India's security.

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