Congress walkout in Chhattisgarh Assembly

RAIPUR, MARCH 24. Congress today walked out of the Chhattisgarh Assembly, demanding dismissal of the State Culture Board chairman for alleged links with naxalites.

Raising the issue during zero hour, Congress members tried to move an adjournment motion on the alleged links of board chairman Chintamani Maharaj with naxals and demanded a statement, which was rejected by the government.

Maharaj has connections with naxalites and a person had recently deposed to that effect in a Sarguja court, Dharamjeet Singh (Cong) said.

Leader of opposition Mahendra Karma accused government of trying to protect Maharaj who had naxal links.

He also sought to know how state intelligence had failed to check his background before appointment to the post.

It was highly objectionable that a person who had participated in `jan adalat' of naxals in Sarguja has been made board chairman, Ravindra Choubey (Cong) said.

Referring to naxalite violence in the State, Congress MLA Uday Mudliyar claimed that ultras had yesterday set fire to seven trucks in the Chief Minister's constituency Dongargaon.

When the government rejected the opposition's demand for statement on the Maharaj issue, Congress MLAs trooped out of the House.

Police mount pressure on naxals

Chhattisgarh Home Minister Brijmohan Agrawal said in the Vidhan Sabha today that the police have mounted pressure on CPI-Maoist naxals who were observing 'Martyrs Week' in Bastar region's tribal areas.

The Minister made the statement during the zero hour when opposition Congress members drew attention to ultras fatally axing a constable in Dantewara district.

``Two policemen were on duty at a temporary helipad, constructed for Governor Krishna Mohan Seth's visit to Dantewara, when insurgents attacked the duo. Rajnarayan Singh was killed while another injured constable was undergoing treatment at a district hospital. The rebels took away two SLRs besides ammunition,'' he explained.

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