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Maoists Say, They Won't Attack Trains

The Maoists are in desperate damage-control mode, trying to distance themselves from a rogue unit of the PCPA militia that sabotaged the rails and caused the Gyaneshwari Express crash, killing 148 people.  On Sunday, the
PTI May 31, 2010 13:06 IST
PTI
The Maoists are in desperate damage-control mode, trying to distance themselves from a rogue unit of the PCPA militia that sabotaged the rails and caused the Gyaneshwari Express crash, killing 148 people.  

On Sunday, the rebels issued a statement denying their involvement in the massacre and urging the government to resume passenger train services at night that have been halted since the derailment, reports Times of India.  

Senior intelligence officers believe that the rebels might even murder the leaders of the village militia to repair the damage to their image.  

"In typical Maoist style, the rebels may execute the men responsible for the derailment, branding them class enemies or traitors," said a police officer, pointing out several recent murders where PCPA men were killed by Maoists.  

Maoist state committee member Akash issued a second press statement on the sabotage on Sunday, saying that they "never target the common people". "The government can resume train services on the section at night. No harm will be done from our side," he said.  

However, it will be very difficult for the red brigade to wash their hands of the incident as it happened in their core zone and the modus operandi has all the hallmarks of a Maoist attack. PCPA, too, has denied any involvement in the sabotage, but police refuse to buy the rebels' claim of innocence.  

Like other top state police officers, including state DGP Bhupinder Singh, ADG CID Raj Kanojia on Sunday hinted that the sabotage was the handiwork of Maoists or their local militia group active in the area.  

On Sunday, a team of CID officers and forensic experts visited the accident site again and collected samples of the removed pandrol clips and stone chips from the track.  

The CID report is expected in a week. Kanojia confirmed that the rail track had been cut and did not mention any explosion.  

The FIR lodged with Jhargram GRP by the driver of Gyaneshwari Express was amended on Sunday to add 'murder', 'attempt to murder' and 'grievous hurt' charges.