A letter by Bihar’s Director-General of Police (DGP) to his counterpart in CRPF, considered a routine correspondence between the police heads, has kicked up a controversy as the BJP objected to the top cop’s request to exclude Bihari officers from the CRPF units fighting Maoists in the state.
The DGP, Abhayanand, has asked the Director-General of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) Dilip Trivedi to withdraw all such officers from here that have Bihar roots.
“It is requested that the CRPF officers belonging to Bihar should not be posted in the State for anti-Maoist operations,” the DGP’s letter said to Trivedi, a copy of which was also sent recently to the Union Home Ministry and the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO).
The immediate reason for this correspondence is said to be the discovery that an assistant commandant of CRPF, Sanjay Kumar Yadav, was leaking vital information to the Maoists owing allegiance to the banned outfit CPI (Maoists) in Magadh region.
The para-military force officer, who belonged to the 159th Battalion of the CRPF, was posted at Barachatti in Gaya district. He was eventually arrested.
Investigations revealed that Sanjay was passing on all the important clues, including possible police action against the Maoists, to top Maoist leader Pradeep Yadav.
It is believed that due to such ‘moles’ in CRPF, Maoist operations in central Bihar were badly hit. “In 2013, there was no encounter with the Maoists in the forest terrain of Magadh, a fiefdom of Maoists,” said a senior police officer.
Following this, the Bihar DGP wrote to his CRPF counterpart to not only withdraw Bihar-origin officers of the para-military force, but also to re-locate the 159th Battalion outside the State.
The BJP pounced on the suggestions, terming them “insult to Bihari pride”. It also attacked chief minister Nitish Kumar for “victimising” Bihari officers.
“The Chief Minister is never tired of talking of Bihari asmita (pride). Yet he has victimised all the Biharis for the fault of one Bihar-based officer. Nitish should offer an apology for this and send a letter to the Centre with a request to withdraw the directive (of not posting officers with roots in Bihar in the State),” said former Deputy Chief Minister and senior BJP leader Sushil Kumar Modi.
The DGP, meanwhile, refused to react on his letter saying, “I don’t discuss my official correspondence with the media.”