Maoists blow up railway track in Bihar

Patna, April 6 (IANS) Maoists Saturday blew up a railway track in Bihar to enforce a two-day strike called by them to protest against the killing of their cadres in Jharkhand, railway police said.

Ten Maoists were killed in a gun battle with the Tritiya Prastuti Committee (TPC), a rival splinter group of the Maoists, in Chatra district of Jharkhand on the intervening night of March 27-28.

“Maoists blew up a track near Hajipur on the Hajipur-Muzaffarpur rail route of East Central Railway to create fear among people and administration,” U.K. Shahi, a railway police official said.

A railway official in Hajipur said the incident had disrupted rail traffic on the route but the repair work was underway.

The strike evoked a mixed response in Bihar as urban areas remained unaffected but normal life was hit in many villages.

“Life in parts of rural Bihar was badly hit during Maoist called shutdown,” an official at the police headquarters here said.

The strike evoked no response in cities and towns like Patna, Gaya, Muzaffarpur, Bhagalpur and Purnea. However, life was affected in rural areas in districts like Patna, Aurangabad, Gaya, Jamui, Jehanabad, Arwal and Banka that are considered Maoist strongholds.

“Fear of Maoist violence forced closure of markets in rural areas and vehicles remained off the roads,” the official said.

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