Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Cop Shoots Self, Says Maoists Did It

Apparently desperate for a transfer from this Maoist-infested eastern Vidarbha district, a police constable shot himself and tried to pass it off as Maoist attack last weekend.

Anand Kulkarni, posted in remote Etapalli village of the district for the last 10 years, was highly disturbed about the health of his old parents in Pune in western Maharashtra, police sources here said.

The young constable created quite a flutter during a sports festival as he limped to the ground from the nearby bushes and shouted that he was hit by a Maoist bullet when he was answering a nature's call.

The police officers who were led to the spot by the injured cop grew suspicious when they saw a bullet buried in the ground besides a cartridge, a water bottle and a bullet-riddled handkerchief.

Quizzed whether the Maoists fired at him from the sky, Anand spilled the beans saying he fired a shot in his left thigh and another in the air in a disturbed state of mind.

'He was recently engaged to be married and apparently tried the trick in the hope of getting transferred to his home district', Superintendent of Police Rajesh Pradhan told IANS.

'The constable should have apprised his superiors of his problems if any, through the laid down procedure; he could have received a personal hearing from me,' said Pradhan.

Pradhan clarified that a constable recruited in a district is normally supposed to serve the entire term there.

R.M. Rokde, additional superintendent of police, told IANS that the on-going sports festival was meant to be an awareness and confidence building measure about the government schemes for the people in the Maoist infested district.

'The Maoists, who have recently surrendered before the district collector and are being rehabilitated, are specially participating in the festival', he said. Such desperate acts committed during such occasions would send a wrong signal, he added.

Describing the constable's attempt as a serious matter, Pradhan said an offence has been registered against him and he would also have to face a departmental inquiry

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