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Kandhamal: Cop killed, police station torched

Source: PTI
Last updated on: September 16, 2008 15:32 IST
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Armed attackers on Tuesday shot dead a police constable and set fire to a police station in Orissa's riot-hit Kandhamal district.

The spurt in violence has led to heavy force deployment in the area.

A large number of attackers armed with country-made guns and crude weapons gunned down a constable and set ablaze the police station at Gochapada early Tuesday morning, Director General of Police Gopal Nanda said.

Other policemen present at the police station, located about 36 km from district headquarters town of Phulbani, seemed to have fled into the forest as they were heavily outnumbered by the attackers, he said.

Kandhamal District Collector Krishan Kumar said the mob comprised about 500 people who were carrying fire arms and other weapons.

Additional security forces have been deployed in the area in the wake of the incident in the sensitive district which has been witnessing violence for the last three weeks, both the DGP and the district collector said.

Police sources said the mob was demanding release of a man held by the security personnel but local residents felt that the attack was retaliatory action of the police firing at Kurtamgarh in Tumudibandh area on September 13.

The roads leading to Gochapada had been blocked by logs and boulders which were being cleared to facilitate the movement of forces, the sources said.

The state police chief said it was not the first instance of a police station being attacked and torched as similar incidents had taken place during the riots that had rocked Kandhamal district in December 2007.

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