The Jhargram sub-divisional special court today remanded Chhattradhar Mahato,leader of the Peoples Committee Against Police Atrocities,to police custody till October 1.
Of the 22 cases registered against Mahato,the court heard three: the one where leaflets were recovered from his home claiming to bring former Andhra Pradesh chief minister (late) Y S R Reddy and Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee to justice in peoples court; setting ablaze the Ramgarh police outpost; and planting explosives in Lalgarh.
Mahato was booked under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) in the case pertaining to the recovery of leaflets from his residence that call for judging Reddy and Bhattacharjee in Janatas Adalat. Mahato is the second person to be booked under the UAPA in Bengal after Maoist spokesperson Gour Chakraborty was arrested earlier. The police have,meanwhile,sought permission from the state government to use UAPA in a number of other cases pending against him. Mahato also has cases against him in neighbouring Jharkhand. In one case,we have booked him under the provisions of UAPA. We have sought permission from the state government to book him under UAPA in a number of other cases. It is confirmed that he is an important personality in CPI (Maoist). Immediately after his arrest yesterday,a landmine was triggered in Lalgarh, said Manoj Verma,Superintendent of Police,West Midnapore.
The police are,meanwhile,interrogating Mahato to procure vital information on various Maoist leaders like Koteshwar Rao alias Kishanji and Bikash,who reportedly masterminded the attacks in Lalgarh. According to police,Mahato was actively in touch with Maoists leaders Bikas,who many believe to be his brother Sashodhar Mahato,and Kishanji. Mahato is wanted in at least two cases in Jharkhand,which are also probably under UAPA. We are also making attempts to arrest Kishanji and Bikas, added Verma. Two of Mahatos cellphones were,meanwhile,sent to the Forensic department to ascertain the names of those who featured on his regular contact list.