BJP Lawmaker, 4 Others Killed In Blast By Maoists In Dantewada: 10 Points

An Improvised Explosive Device concealed in the road was set off. It ripped the bullet-proof vehicle into two, killing the occupants instantly.

The attack is seen as the Maoists' way of issuing a warning.

Highlights

  • Maoists blew up Dantewada lawmaker Bhima Mandavi's car with IEDs
  • Police said he went to the area despite their advice against it
  • Polling in Chhattisgarh will be held as scheduled: Election Commission
New Delhi: A devastating Maoist attack just two days before the national elections killed the BJP lawmaker of Chhattisgarh's Dantewada on Tuesday. His driver and three security personnel also died in the attack. Bhima Mandavi, 40, was out for campaigning. The police said he had gone to the area against their advice. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has condemned the attack and said it was "deeply anguishing". The Election Commission has sought a report, but said polling in the state will be held as per schedule. Dantewada votes on April 11 in the first phase. Elections will also be held in the state in two other phases, on April 18 and 23.

Here are 10 points on Dantewada attack:

  1. Bhima Mandavi was heading towards Kuwakonda from Bacheli area, when his vehicle was targeted near Shyamagiri hills around 4.30 pm on Tuesday. The area is nearly 350 km from state capital Raipur.  

  2. An Improvised Explosive Device concealed in the road was set off. It ripped the bullet-proof vehicle into two, killing the occupants instantly. The Maoists, who were hiding nearby, started shooting when the people in the two other cars tried to come out.

  3. State police chief DM Awasthi told NDTV that the legislator was repeatedly warned against travelling on the road as it was not sanitised. "The police called him up and made two attempts to convince him.  He did not listen and said that he knew the area," the police chief said.

  4. The attack is seen as the Maoists' way of issuing a warning. Ahead of every election, Maoists warn locals against voting. Posters bearing the message are usually put up in public areas.

  5. In last year's assembly elections, won decisively by the Congress, Bhima Mandavi had managed to unseat Congress lawmaker Devti Karma from the reserved constituency.

  6. PM Modi had tweeted: "Shri Bhima Mandavi was a dedicated Karyakarta of the BJP. Diligent and courageous, he assiduously served the people of Chhattisgarh. His demise is deeply anguishing. Condolences to his family and supporters. Om Shanti."

  7. Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel, who rebuilt the state Congress unit after a devastating Maoist attack in 2013 killed the party's top leadership, said, "Who will understand the tragedy better than us, who lost a whole generation of our leaders in a Maoist attack".

  8. The Maoists, Mr Baghel said, were upset that the government had succeeded in winning the trust of the tribals in the area and the attack was proof of that.

  9. Ahead of last year's assembly polls, two policemen and a cameraperson of national broadcaster Doordarshan were killed in Dantewada district in October.

  10. In 2013, a Maoist attack in Sukma district's Darbha valley had wiped out the top leadership of the Congress in the state. Twenty-seven people had died - the list included state minister Mahendra Karma and state Congress chief Nand Kumar Patel.



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