Death of a teacherOn September 14, Maoists entered Jamda High School around 11.15 am. Classes were on and Kartyk Mahato (38), a para-teacher, was standing near the school building. Outside, mid-day meal was being cooked. Kartyk was the only teacher present at that time. As five Maoists opened fire at him, an injured Kartyk limped his way inside the classroom and hid behind the benches. Soon, Maoists followed him into the classroom, asking the screaming children to vacate the school. Kartyk was then dragged outside and shot a number of times in full view of the schoolchildren. His fault: he was a CPM supporter.
“I saw Sir hiding under the benches with blood oozing out of his leg. They asked us to leave the school and we ran out. Then I heard the gunshots,” said a shaken Chandra Mahato, a class IV student.
Killings at marketSeptember 12: In Guripal village, Maoist squads shot dead two villagers in broad daylight in the local market when they were having tea in a stall. Sambhu was the CPM branch committee secretary of Buripal in Salboni. The armed Maoist squads came on motorbikes in the village market and shot the duo from close range at around 10 am. They roamed in the market for over half an hour as the bodies lay in a pool of blood, warning everybody to follow their diktat.
Kangaroo justice On July 10, around 50 armed CPI (Maoist) cadres, including seven women, held a kangaroo court in the Sirsha village, 25 km from Lalgarh, to “try” twelve villagers, most of them CPM supporters. Two of them — local CPM leader Gurucharan Mahato and Baren Mahato, a CPM supporter and ration dealer — were sentenced to death. The rest were beaten up and forced to quit the party. Gurucharan and Baren were shot dead in public. “They dragged my father out of home and then killed him. Later, I could not even cremate him in my native village. Instead, we performed his last rites in Midnapore town,” said Gurucharan’s son Himansu.
Gore in murderOn July 11, mutilated bodies of Tarini Deb Singha and Swapan Deb Singha were found near a ditch in Madhupur near Lalgarh. Tarini was shot in the eye and had multiple stab injuries. His hand and legs were tied. Swapan Deb’s throat, veins in arms and legs were slit. He was also shot from a 9 mm pistol in the head. According to police, both were CPM supporters and residents of Madhupur. Armed Maoist squads raided their homes at night and called them out. They were beaten up and dragged to the local ditch and murdered. Interestingly, Maoist squads did not allow the body to be brought back to their native village after it was taken away for postmortem by police. The last rites of the bodies were performed in Midnapore town.
Body on displayThe body of CPM member Saflu Soren (65) lay near his party office for six days after he was murdered by Maoists on June 12 after being dragged out of his home in Dharampur. His body was kept near the branch committee office in Dharampur on a van rickshaw and Maoists did not allow anyone from the village to cremate it. The decomposed body was later recovered by the police.