Maoists release two abducted railway employees in Bihar

Patna, Dec 20 (IANS) Hours after abducting two railway employees in Bihar, Maoists on Wednesday night released them, police said.

Munger Superintendent of Police (SP) Ashish Bharti and Lakhisarai SP Arvind Thakur confirmed the release of abducted railway employees.

"The two abducted railway employees -- Assistant Station Master Mukesh Kumar and porter Narendra Mandal -- were releasaed by Maoists near Dharhara forest," they said.

According to the police officials, Bhagalpur Range IG Sushil Khopde talked to the railway employees after their release by Maoists in Dharhara Police Station to know about the incident.

Armed Maoists on late Tuesday night attacked the Masudan railway station on Jamalpur-Kiul rail section, torched cabin panel and abducted the two railway employees to enforce a shutdown they have called.

According to an Eastern Railway official, the attack took place at about 11.25 p.m. After that train services on that stretch were halted.

Eastern Railway Spokesperson Ravi Mahapatra told IANS that after the attack, the Gaya-Jamalpur Passenger train, which arrived at the Masudan station at 11.39 p.m, had to be halted there as the signalling system had been damaged.

"Senior police officials then arrived at the station with engineers and the train was allowed to move at 5.45 a.m on Wednesday," he said.

"But soon after the services started, an Assistant Operations Manager at Malda received a threat call from the Maoists that if any movement took place, the abducted persons would be killed. It prompted the suspension of services on the section at 7.00 a.m," Mahapatra said.

A number of trains were halted on the Kiul-Jamalpur-Bhagalpur section of Malda Division including Farakka Express and Muzaffarpur Bhagalpur Jan Sewa Express at Kiul, Banka Express at Barahiya and Jaynagar-Howrah Passenger train at Dinkar Gram Simaria, the officer added.



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