CRIME WATCH : Trader missing in Dooars – Kin suspect 61-year-old kidnapped, cops clueless

CRIME WATCH : Trader missing in Dooars – Kin suspect 61-year-old kidnapped, cops clueless – situation in the Siliguri Corridor to get much worse before a political settlement can be urgently reached – bad for National Security ?!!

Suvendu Saha - just missing or kidnapped by the KLO ?!!

FROM THE TELEGRAPH CORRESPONDENT

Barobisha (Alipurduar), July 1: A businessman has gone missing from the Bengal-Assam border — where KLO militants are active — on Tuesday night with his family suspecting that he was abducted by rebels but police keeping mum.

Suvendu Saha, a ration shop owner and a wholesale grocery dealer of Barobisha in Kumarganj, used to travel 15km every morning on his motorcycle to his shop at Khokshaguri in Gosaigaon in Assam’s Kokrajhar district. Before returning home around nine every night, he used to stop at his brother’s paan shop at Bajugaon, 4km away.

However, the 61-year-old businessman did not go to his brother’s shop on Tuesday, neither did he return home that night, the police said.

Sudip Saha, Suvendu’s son, said: “We could not contact him as his cellphone did not work inside Assam. After a search, we lodged missing person’s diary at the Barobisha police outpost and also at Shimultapu outpost in Assam yesterday. We have not received any telephone call demanding ransom.”

This afternoon, the additional superintendent of police of Alipurduar, Anup Jaiswal, visited Saha’s family. “But he could not give us any information about my father,” Sudip said.

Most of the people in Barobisha, 34km from here, suspect that Saha has been kidnapped in Assam.

A police team toured areas in Gosaigaon that had been frequented by Saha and collected information from their counterparts in Assam. According to a source, two persons on a motorcycle followed the businessman and after that he went missing from Mastaigaon area.

Militants of the KLO are active in this area of lower Assam, the source said.

About a year ago, Ratan Roy, a KLO linkman, was arrested from the area. In October last year, Dhananjoy Barman, a militant, was injured in an encounter with the army at the Chakropani forest of Kokrajhar district. Barman and his wife Sumitra, who is the sister of self-styled chief of the KLO Jeeban Singha, were later arrested and were brought to Bengal.

In 2002, Naresh Das, a businessman of Barobisha, was kidnapped by suspected KLO militants from a resort. Since then, there has been no trace of him.

Three bomb blasts had occurred in and around Barobisha between 2006 and 2007 in which five persons were injured. But it is yet to be ascertained which outfit was behind the explosions.

The secretary of Barobisha Byabsayee Samiti, Ratan Chandra Pandit, said more than 200 traders from the Alipurduar and Barobisha areas of Bengal went to different places in Assam for business everyday. “We have not received any information about Saha so far. This is a cause of concern for us.”

The additional superintendent of police of Alipurduar said his officers were in touch with their Assam counterparts.

“Saha’s family told me that they have not received any phone call. We are in contact with the Assam police and let’s hope for the best. We are not in a position to confirm whether Saha has been kidnapped or not. However, we are examining all possibilities,” Jaiswal said.

MEANWHILE FROM ACCIDENT WATCH

Two die as car slips – any co-relation to kidnapping ?!!

Damaged car at Cooch Behar Police Station - not related to any kidnapping ?!! (Photo by Main Uddin Chisti)

FROM THE TELEGRAPH CORRESPONDENT

Cooch Behar, July 1: Two businessmen from town were killed early this morning when the car in which they were travelling slipped into a ditch and was filled with water.

The crash near Baneswar bazaar, 20km from here, has left a doctor injured also. Ashok Brahma has been admitted to hospital. He works at a health centre in Baneswar and was driving the car.

Police said according to preliminary investigations, the accident occurred around 2am. Dilip Saha, 36, a resident of Harendranarayan Road, and Sanjoy Banik, 32, from Subhashpally, were returning home after attending a business meeting at Barobisha on the Bengal-Assam border.

“As of now, it is not very clear what happened and we can only say that those who died were on the backseat of the vehicle. The person driving the car escaped with injuries and is under treatment at MJN District Hospital,” said Arindam Sarkar, the deputy superintendent of police (headquarters), Cooch Behar.

The police officer said Dr Sarkar was yet to be interrogated. “The car has been taken out of the mire and brought to Cooch Behar police station,” he said.

Sources in the police said after the car fell into the swamp, the doctor somehow managed to get out of it and called one of his friends from his cellphone, who in turn informed the police.

“We don’t know what exactly happened. And why was he driving the car at that time of the night? The police called up the families at 7am,” said Swarup Dey, Saha’s neighbour.

The bodies of Saha and Banik were handed over to their family members in the afternoon after post-mortem.

EARLIER

Sandalwood seized, two arrested – organized crime at work ?!!

Red sandalwood worth crores seized in Siliguri - from Jaipur to Myanmar ?!! (Darpan)

From ThaIndia News

Siliguri, June 30 (IANS): Sandalwood worth over Rs.1 crore has been seized from two trucks in West Bengal’s Darjeeling district, official sources said here.

Acting on a tip, officials of the Directorate of Revenue stopped the trucks in Ghoshpukur area and made the seizure totally 12 tonnes Tuesday night.

The drivers of the Mizoram-bound trucks were arrested. The trucks started off from Rajasthan.

FROM THE TELEGRAPH BRIEFS

Sandalwood – from Jaipur to Myanmar ?!!

Siliguri: Officials of the directorate of revenue intelligence seized red sandalwood worth Rs 1 crore from two trucks at Leusipakhri on Wednesday night.

DRI sources said the logs were loaded on the vehicles from Jaipur in Rajasthan and the officials suspect that they were being smuggled to Myanmar through Siliguri and the north-eastern states.

Drivers of both the vehicles have been arrested.

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