The last rites will be performed on Thursday; no Uttar Pradesh Ministers pay homage

Heart-rending scenes were witnessed at the Amausi airport when the bodies of 42 Central Reserve Police Force jawans from Uttar Pradesh slain in Tuesday's Maoist attack in Dhantewada were brought here by special aircraft on Wednesday.

The bodies of seven jawans belonging to Uttarakhand were also brought to Lucknow.

Of the 75 personnel killed in the ambush, the maximum number hailed from Uttar Pradesh, attached to the 62nd battalion stationed at Rampur. The bodies were received by CRPF officers and State government officials. Grief-stricken relatives broke down when the coffins were lined up outside the airport.

The Uttar Pradesh police presented a guard of honour.

Their last rites would be performed on Thursday.

Governor B.L. Joshi and Chief Minister Mayawati paid tribute. While the Governor was represented at the airport by his aide-de-camp, Major Vikas Dhankal, Ms. Mayawati was represented by Additional Cabinet Secretary and Principal Secretary to the Chief Minister Net Ram.

ADG (Law and Order) Brij Lal , Lucknow District Magistrate Anil Sagar, DIG Rajiv Krishna and senior officials were present when the aircraft touched down.

However, no Minister of the Mayawati government came.

Condemning the attack, Ms. Mayawati said, in a message, that it was a cowardly act committed by the Naxalites.

Six bodies reach Patna

Shoumojit Banerjee reports from Patna:

The bodies of six CRPF jawans, hailing from Bihar, were brought to the Jai Prakash Narayan International Airport in Patna by a special Indian Air Force plane.

The deceased included inspectors Jitu Anand of Lakhisarai and Prakash Kumar of East Champaran, sub-inspector Vishwanath Rai of Gopalganj, sepoy Butan Yadav of West Champaran, head constable Surendra Rai of Gopalganj and constable Motilal Ram of Saran district.

The bodies were received by Director-General of Police Neelmani, Additional Director-General of Police P.N. Rai, Senior Superintendent of Police Vineet Vinayak and the DIG of the CRPF.

Expressing grief, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar said: “The State government will give full assistance to the families of the deceased in their hour of need.”

Speaking to reporters, Mr. Neelmani said: “The state machinery is vigilant in combating the Naxal menace, and 12 area commanders have been nabbed since 2009.” He said 1,117 incidents of Naxal violence occurred between 2001 and 20004, but the number dipped to 338, from 2006 and 2009, after Mr. Nitish Kumar came to power.

To combat the rebels, the State government recently announced that it would post a Deputy Commandant of Assam Rifles and five Deputy Commandants of the Border Security Force as Additional Superintendents (Operations) in the Naxal-affected districts of Jamui, Bhabua, Gaya, Nawada, Rohtas and Aurangabad.

It also planned to raise the insurance cover for policemen and Home Guard personnel posted in the 15 Maoist-hit districts from Rs. 12 lakh to Rs. 13.75 lakh.

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