The Jalpaiguri blast that killed six people last week could have been averted had the West Bengal Police acted on intelligence inputs it received from the central and state agencies.
As per the sources in the police,the department had received three intelligence inputs a week ahead of the December 26 blast,alerting the security forces about a platoon of Kamtapur Liberation Organisation (KLO) commanders entering the Jalpaiguri town and hatching a terror plot.
However,the security forces sat on the inputs.
The intelligence inputs suggested that senior KLO leaders were present in Malda and Jalpaiguri to execute terror activities.
The outfit,which was not taken seriously by the Bengal Police in last few years,is now said to have considerable fire power.
The cartridges,recovered from a spot in Malda where more than 10 rounds were fired at a public bus recently,belong to sophisticated assault rifle of a senior KLO leader,said a senior official of the state forensic department.
We have information that Malkhan Singh alias Madhab Mondal a military chief in the KLO was present at the spot when the shots were fired. The assault rifle belongs to him. However,he has now left the region, said a senior police official.
Meanwhile,the police arrested one more person in connection with the bicycle bomb blast.
Superintendent of Police Amit P Javalgi said Dipankar Singh,a KLO linkman,was picked up from Kharibari area of neighbouring Darjeeling district,taking the total number of arrests in this connection to three.
Earlier,general secretary of Kamtapur Peoples Party (KPP) central committee,Nubas Burman,was arrested on December 29 from his home at Toofanganj in Cooch Behar while another man,Chandan Roy was arrested from Moynaguri in Jalpaiguri in connection with the December 26 blast. KPP is the political offshoot of the KLO.
The KPP,meanwhile,protested against the crackdown on its leaders and workers.
We are not connected with the KLO. We do not have any connection.
There is difference of ideology too. But the government wants to suppress the non-violent Kamtapuri movement and that is why it is coming down heavily on the KPP leaders, said Atul Roy,president of KPP.
KLO bars Bengalis from entering Kamtapur
In a press statement,Kaliash Koch,general secretary of KLO,said Indians and Bengalis are prohibited from entering the Kamtapur region. We have started a freedom struggle for liberation from India.The Indians and Bengalis are prohibited in our motherland. We appeal to the Kamtapuri people to be ready to sacrifice their lives for the freedom struggle. We will launch an armed struggle to free our motherland, the statement reads.
Finally,Mamata condemns blast
Speaking for the first time on the bicycle bomb blast in Jalpaiguiri,Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee Tuesday said her government will take strong action against those who are behind the incident. Nobody would be spared. We are with the victims families. There are good people in society. But there are some bad elements too and we have to resist them, Mamata said after a high level meeting which discussed the increasing KLO activities. ENS