Agnipath protests: Bihar police arrest Maoist allegedly behind torching trains

Published on Aug 06, 2022 05:23 PM IST
Three separate FIRs were lodged with the GRP and Town police station in June against arsonists who were involved in torching bogies of Anand Vihar-Bhagalpur Vikramshila Express and Muzaffarpur-Bhagalpur Janseva Express
Smoke billows from a train coach after it was set on fire by demonstrators during a protest against the 'Agnipath' defence recruitment scheme in Bihar in June. (Santosh Kumar/ HT File Photo)

The Lakhisarai police have claimed that they have nabbed a Maoist, who played a key role in the torching of two trains on June 18 during protests against the Centre’s ‘Agnipath’ defence scheme, with assistance from Telangana cops.

“The Maoist, a native of Banka, was staying at a rented house in Lakhisarai along with other suspects for the past three years. He was caught by the police after an input from the special intelligence bureau of Telangana,” a police officer said. The arrested Maoist is said to be PhD holder in English from a Bhagalpur university.

Confirming the development, Lakhisarai ASP Syed Imran Masood told HT that the arrested Maoist has been identified as Manshyam Das, who goes by aliases of ‘Sudesh’, ‘Rahul’ and ‘Sudama’, and he was allegedly into influencing students during the protests.

“One of the professors of the Bhagalpur university has also come under our radar as he also provoked job aspirants who were involved in the protests. It is nothing new for the Maoists to try and draw agitated and disgruntled elements to carry on their agenda,” said the ASP.

Also Read:Agnipath protests: Mobs set 10 trains ablaze, target top BJP leaders

An FIR has been lodged against seven persons, including Das, a member of the East Bihar North East Jharkhand special area committee, Raushan Sinha, national president of All India Student Federation and Vilakshan Ravidas, and a professor.

According to the FIR, the police said they acted on a tip-off by Telangana police, and raided the house of one Vikash Modi and arrested Das. The police recovered five cell phones, two Aadhar cards, four letters, etc., from the rented accommodation. The letters were allegedly addressed to Maoist commanders Pramod Mishra, Pravesh Da and Prof Vilakshan Das.

During interrogation, Manshyam revealed that Raushan provided two fake IDs, while Prof Vilakshan arranged the Maoist literature. The arrested left-wing extremists worked as a courier for Maoist commander Arbind Yadav, secretary of the Bihar-Jharkhand zonal committee.

Lakhisarai SP Pankaj Kumar Sinha said three separate FIRs were lodged with the GRP and Town police station against named and unidentified arsonists who were involved in torching bogies of Anand Vihar-Bhagalpur Vikramshila Express and Muzaffarpur-Bhagalpur Janseva Express.

So far 30 people have been arrested and sent to judicial custody. “Many of the arrested protestors revealed Manshyam’s name, who allegedly visited several coaching institutes to intensify the stir against the Agnipath scheme,” the police said.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Avinash, a senior correspondent, reports on crime, railways, defence and social sector, with specialisation in police, home department and other investigation agencies.

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