Maoist Bomb Blast Kills 5 Police in India

Posted October 18th, 2012 at 8:45 am (UTC-5)
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Authorities in eastern India say a bomb planted by Maoist rebels has killed five paramilitary personnel.

Senior officials with the Central Reserve Police Force told reporters that Thursday's attack took place in the Gaya district of Bihar state. At least six other paramilitary police were wounded in the blast, including four who were flown to a hospital in Bihar's capital, Patna.

The paramilitary force were on patrol when their vehicle hit a land mine. The area is said to be a known stronghold of Maoist rebels.

India's government has repeatedly called the Maoist rebels one of the biggest threats to the country's internal security. More than 1,000 people were killed in rebel violence in 2010.

The rebels say they are fighting for the rights of the poor and landless because of what they say are severe inequities in land acquisition and wealth distribution.

While the number of Maoist attacks has decreased in recent months, the rebels have carried out several high-profile kidnappings — capturing two Italians, an Indian lawmaker and a district officer.