After a series of meetings between Chief Minister Raman Singh and senior officers, it was decided that Chhattisgarh Director General of Police Ram Niwas would look after VIP security arrangements.

The DGP will be assisted by two senior officers, IG in-charge of State armed forces G.P. Singh and DIG Dipanshu Kabra, who is attached with the State intelligence branch. Both the officers have extensive knowledge of Naxal activity in the State. The decision came a day after Mr. Singh said security “lapse” led to last week’s Maoist attack on a Congress convoy.

A number of high-profile administrative officers in the State have been suspended or transferred owing to that.

Bastar Superintendent of Police Mayank Srivastava, who had taken over recently, has been suspended and attached to the DGP’s office. The Inspector General (IG) of Bastar, Himanshu Gupta, has also been transferred. The new IG of Bastar range will be Arun Dev Gautam and Ajay yadav will be the new SP of Bastar.

The collector of Bastar, Anbalagan P., has also been removed and Ankit Anand appointed in his place. Mr. Anbalagan has been posted as the deputy secretary at the State Secretariat. Interestingly, a collector of north Chhattisgarh, Jashpur, has also been changed. All the decisions were approved by Mr. Singh during a late-night meeting, sources told The Hindu.

Investigator appointed

The Chhattisgarh General Administration department has issued a notification announcing that Justice Prashant Kumar Mishra of Bilaspur High Court will investigate the Darbha incident.

“The chief of inquiry commission was appointed after the Chief Minister’s meeting with Chhattisgarh High Court Chief Justice Yatindra Singh,” said a senior official. Justice Mishra, who has been asked to submit his report within three months, will look into the alleged security lapses on part of the State police, while the National Investigation Team (NIA) has been mandated with finding out the accused and charge them under law.

Justice Mishra, 48, enrolled as an advocate in 1987 and practised law in Raigarh district court, Madhya Pradesh High Court and the Chhattisgarh High Court, and has dealt with both civil and criminal cases.

A special session of Chhattisgarh Assembly will be called around first week of June to pay homage to those who were killed in last week’s attack and the security situation will be reviewed, official sources said. An all party meeting has also been called by the Chief Minister on 30 May to discuss the security situation.

Meanwhile, on Tuesday the NIA team probing the incident visited the hilly tract of Jeeram in Darbha, where last week’s incident took place. The team spoke to some of the injured admitted in the hospitals in Raipur on Monday. Security officials are more or less certain that the Maoist cadres who carried out the attack had moved in two different directions. “One team has moved to Tulsidongri area between Malkangiri and Koraput district of Odisha and the other moved to Dantewada through Katyekalyan area,” a senior official told The Hindu.

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