The IED blast that killed five CRPF personnel and two ambulance staff members in Dharba area of Bastar on Saturday, police suspect, was planted more than two years back. The CRPF personnel, violating the standard operating procedure, had allegedly boarded the ambulance as one of the elderly inspector in the patrol party was not feeling well.
Chhattisgarh police claims that Maoists have planted many such IEDs on different roads of Bastar and the wires remain conneced with the tree trunks in nearby jungle. Moaists come back to detonate the IED, whenever they get a chance, even when the roads have been reconstructed or macadamized at many places.
Chhattisgarh government also announced compensation of Rs 20 lakh each and a government job to families of polling staff and two ambulance staff members. Besides, as per the government policy each family hit by Maoist violence gets a compensation of Rs 12 lakh.
"This is basically very tough area. Maoists managed to detonate the IED planted more than two years back, otherwise the road at the spot was macadamized and concrete," Bastar superintendent of police, Ajay Yadav told dna. Preliminary investigation, Yadav said revealed that 'a senior inspector in the patrol party was not feeling well and this is when they boarded the Sanjeevni 108 ambulance, that untimately led to the tragedy.'
On Saturday, two days after the elections, twin bomb blasts rocked Bastar killing 14 people, including seven polling staff, who were coming back from election duty. The polling staff was also advised not to use any vehicle and walk the distance.
A government delegation, led by the chief secretary of Chhattisgarh, Vivek Dhand and director general of police, A N Upadhayay, had planned to visit the blast spot in Dharba on Sunday, but could not reach there. They visited Bijapur, where election party was attacked and then moved back to Jagdalpur, where they addressed a presser.
"There was adequate force in Bastar during elections and no EVM machine was damaged during the blast. However, the incidents do reflect the failure of intelligence," Dhand told media in Jagdalpur.
Police as of now has not detained anybody after the incident and search operations are going on in nearby jungles of Dharba and Bijapur.
"We have got some inputs and are hopeful of breakthrough. At least 40 to 50 CRPF companies are still coming back from interiors of Bastar. There is a huge movement of forces going on. We could not have handled the VIP movement here," said Yadav, who his supervising the operation from Dharba.