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Eight arrested for killing of Jharkhand MP

Eight Jharkhand villagers, including two top Maoist leaders, were arrested Monday in connection with the killing of Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) MP Sunil Mahato last week.

Police here said most of those held were villagers in the know of the Maoists' move - the Lok Sabha MP from Jamshedpur and four others were killed on March 4 while watching a football match at a village in Jamshedpur.

Those arrested include Ranjan Mahto and Nirmal Mahto, known to be hardcore rebels belonging to the banned Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist). A former village headman Sudhir Soren has also been arrested.According to officials, the Maoists first visited the site of the match on March 2 and 3. On D-day, when the soccer match was under progress, they surrounded the village and shot the MP at close range. They stayed at a nearby hill and sneaked into West Bengal thereafter.

Said an official: 'The Maoist rebels had reached the village 48 hours before the killing where Mahto was killed. Two women Maoist rebels were involved in the killing.''Till now the evidence we have collected indicates that the Maoists killed Mahato in revenge for the killing of their cadres in Lango village,' Additional Director General of Police (Crime Investigating Department) R.C Kaithal told IANS.

He was referring to the 2003 incident in Jamshedpur's Lango village when nine Maoists were killed by members of the village defence committee, which aids the security forces in tracking the guerrillas. 'We are also investigating the political angle in the murder but till now no evidence of that nature has come to surface,' said Kaithal.

According to police sources, the contractor mafia could also have a hand in the killing. Some people were apparently unhappy with Mahato over a Rs.4.4 million irrigation project being handed over to a close associate of the MP's, speculated a senior official. India e news

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posted by Resistance 3/12/2007 10:52:00 PM,


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